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Francisco Lindor’s Warm Return to Cleveland Post-Trade

Lindor's Heartfelt

Francisco Lindor returns to Cleveland for the first time since his trade to the Mets in 2021. Fans give him a warm welcome despite the game loss. Read on for the full story of his journey and the impact on both teams.

Key Takeaways
  • Francisco Lindor returned to Cleveland for the first time since his 2021 trade to the Mets, receiving a mostly warm welcome from fans.
  • Lindor, once a star player for Cleveland, is struggling in the 2024 season with a .197 batting average.
  • The trade has had significant impacts, with Andrés Giménez thriving for the Guardians and Lindor signed to a massive extension with the Mets.

Lindor’s Career in Cleveland & the Trade to the Mets

Francisco Lindor, a switch-hitting shortstop, started his major league career with the Cleveland Guardians.

Drafted eighth overall in 2011, Lindor debuted in 2015 and quickly became one of baseball’s top players.

Over six seasons with Cleveland, he made four All-Star teams, finished in the top 10 in MVP voting three times, and won two Silver Sluggers and two Gold Gloves. His popularity with fans was immense.

However, with free agency looming, Cleveland’s front office traded him rather than attempt a potentially costly contract extension.

In January 2021, Lindor and pitcher Carlos Carrasco were traded to the New York Mets for Andrés Giménez, Amed Rosario, Isaiah Greene, and Josh Wolf.

The Mets subsequently signed Lindor to a 10-year, $341 million extension.

Lindor’s Struggles and the Impact on Cleveland’s Roster

Lindor has had a challenging start to the 2024 season, batting just .197/.273/.355 with eight doubles, seven home runs, 22 RBIs, 28 runs, and six stolen bases.

In contrast, he had a strong 2023 season with a 6.0 WAR and finished ninth in NL MVP voting.

Despite his struggles, Lindor remains an important player for the Mets, though he has not made an All-Star team since 2019 with Cleveland.

Andrés Giménez, one of the key players Cleveland received in the trade, has flourished. Signed as an international free agent by the Mets in 2015, Giménez made his MLB debut in 2020.

He was an All-Star in 2022, winning two Gold Gloves and one Platinum Glove as the best defensive second baseman in the American League.

Giménez signed a seven-year, $106.5 million contract with the Guardians in 2023. Another player from the trade, Amed Rosario, was traded to the Dodgers in 2023 and then signed with the Tampa Bay Rays for the 2024 season.

Greene and Wolf remain in the Guardians’ minor league system.

Lindor’s Emotional Cleveland Reunion and Fan Reaction

On May 21, 2024, Lindor returned to Cleveland for the first time since the trade. He was greeted warmly by fans, though some boos were mixed in.

Before the game, Lindor spent time with his former teammates, including José Ramírez and Carlos Carrasco, who rejoined Cleveland on a one-year contract but is currently on the injured list.

I hope they appreciate what he did for the city. He really had some big hits, some big plays. You want them to appreciate him.” said Mets’ third-base coach Mike Sarbaugh, who held the same role in Cleveland during Lindor’s tenure, reflecting on Lindor’s contributions.

Lindor, who went 0-for-4 in the game that the Guardians won 3-1, acknowledged the mixed emotions of his return.

I’ve got nothing but love for them,” Lindor said. “I’ll give them my love, and I’ll give them a great show this week.

Lindor’s Ongoing Impact and Future with the Guardians

Francisco Lindor’s journey in Major League Baseball is far from over. His return to Cleveland showed his lasting impact on the city and its fans.

As he continues to work on his game with the Mets, there’s hope for a bright future.

Since the trade, Lindor and the Guardians have grown, and Lindor and Cleveland’s bond remains strong.

The future holds many possibilities, and we will be watching closely as Lindor continues his career.