Walters could be a caddy to elite prospect Francisco Lindor, who’s sure to be the Indians shortstop next season and perhaps as soon as this weekend.
Zach Walters, ss
Previously dealt from Arizona to Washington for Jason Marquis at the 2011 trade deadline, Walters stands out for his versatility and his above-average raw power. A switch-hitter with serious bat speed from both sides of the plate, he tied for the Triple-A International League lead with 29 homers in 2013 and has hit for both average and power in his third straight year at Syracuse. Walters has another plus tool in his arm strength, which allows him to handle shortstop or third base. Though he’s just a fringe-average runner, Walters is athletic enough to play all over the diamond, and he has gotten the most playing time at second base this year. The biggest knock on Walters is his lack of plate discipline, as evidenced by his 196-40 strikeout-walk mark over the last two seasons. A switch-hitter with power, arm strength and a tendency to swing and miss, Walters draws comparisons to Nationals infielder Danny Espinosa, and he profiles best as a super utilityman with offensive upside.
Asdrubal Cabrera, ss
Cabrera, 28, owns a career slash line of .270/.331/.410 but has seen his offense performance slip the past three years from a .792 OPS to its current .692. In the final year of a three-year, $21.05 million deal, he was sure to leave Cleveland at the end of the season. For now, he fits into a possible rotating infield in Washington as he auditions for teams looking for a shortstop in 2015, one who will not qualify for a qualifying offer, which will help his free agent cause.