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Done Deal: The Cubs trade Kosuke Fukudome to the Indians

Jul 28, 2011, 12:21 PM EDT

Kosuke Fukudome

UPDATE:  Done deal, reports Carrie Muskat of  Kosuke Fukudome is an Indian.

11:04:  Multiple sources are now reporting that the Tribe would send two minor leaguers, as yet unidentified, put a pitcher and a position player to Chicago.  It’s also being reported that the Cubs will pick up all but $775,000 of the $4.5 million Fukudome is still owed for 2011. A deal is expected to be done before game time tonight.

10:01 AMKen Rosenthal tweets that the Indians are in “serious talks” for Cubs’ outfielder Kosuke Fukudome. Danny Knobler says “it’s very close to happening.”

Lots of barriers to something happening here. For one thing, money, in that Fukudome is owed over $4 million for the rest of the year and the Indians aren’t the habit of adding salary. For another thing, Fukudome has a no-trade clause. It’s limited, but I’m guessing one could make a lot of money betting on things like “a given player’s no-trade clause includes Cleveland.” Finally, his contract contains a clause that prohibits teams from offering him arbitration, so the Tribe won’t be able to get picks for him.  Of course, as was the case with Carlos Beltran, it’s an open question as whether offering him arbitration would have made sense anyway.

If they can get past all of that — and from the sound of it, they’re close to doing that — adding Fukudome to the Indians wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world. He has gotten on base at a decent clip this year, and given how thin the Indians’ outfield is right now, he could be useful.

  1. crpls - Jul 28, 2011 at 10:04 AM

    Really? This is what the Indians are doing to “go for it?”

    • crpls - Jul 28, 2011 at 10:06 AM

      Hmm, Cot’s and @MLBastian both suggest full no-trade:

  2. largebill - Jul 28, 2011 at 10:07 AM

    Meh. Trading much of anything for Fukudome is a non starter. I am not opposed to trading key prospects for a difference making player. Fukudome is not a major difference maker. Especially seeing as he is a rental that doesn’t even come with the prospect of draft picks. No thanks.

    • crpls - Jul 28, 2011 at 10:16 AM

      I doubt the Indians would be offering arbitration anyway. The lowest he could make in arb is $10.8m and the likelihood of a panel giving him the full %20 cut, or any cut at all, seems slim.

      And Fukudome himself would probably accept, unless he truly thinks he can get a multi-year deal for more.

  3. kmgannon - Jul 28, 2011 at 10:07 AM

    As a Tribe fan, color me underwhelmed.

  4. scottp9 - Jul 28, 2011 at 10:20 AM


    Actually, the opposite is usually true. Players who have the leverage to get no-trade clauses – K-Rod aside – generally use them to ding the big market clubs that might be realistic trade candidates. Since the Indians never take on money and in recent years have been trade-deadline sellers rather than buyers, not many players would waste one of their limited no-trade designations on Cleveland.

    • scottp9 - Jul 28, 2011 at 10:22 AM

      Sheesh, looks like my block quote was deleted. My comment above only addressed the notion that Cleveland would be a common no-trade choice among players generally.

      • crpls - Jul 28, 2011 at 10:29 AM

        I thought the same thing when I read it–but while they do ding big market teams, if they have a decent sized list (say, 10+ teams?) lots of cruddy/”small market” teams get listed too. Or areas they’d rather not move to.

        Supposedly he is getting some small incentives to waive his no-trade.

  5. bigleagues - Jul 28, 2011 at 10:29 AM

    I’m assuming the Indians are aware that Fukodome is an All-Star in April and an afterthought by May.

    Perhaps Acta is drawing on his experience watching Randolph deal with Kaz Matsui. Oh yeah, Matsui was a bust as well.

    Well I can’t really think of a good reason why the Indians would do this deal, unless they are getting him for nothing but the cash owed.

  6. largebill - Jul 28, 2011 at 10:31 AM

    “Supposedly he is getting some small incentives to waive his no-trade.”

    Holding out for Shapiro’s parking spot and a case of stadium mustard.

  7. RK - Jul 28, 2011 at 10:44 AM

    Can someone with Photoshop skills please get a screenshot of the grounds keepers in Major League with the subtitle “We’re Fukudomed”

  8. diehardcubbiefan4life - Jul 28, 2011 at 11:57 AM


    • ptho16 - Jul 28, 2011 at 12:42 PM

      enjoy your AAAA relief pitcher and your 3B who has a 100/22 strikeout/walk ratio.

      • nick5253 - Jul 28, 2011 at 1:48 PM

        Getting anything back for Fuku is a WIN for the Cubs. This guy has a hallow OBP and overrated defense. He had a 0% chance to be with the Cubs in 2012.

        Even if the ‘prospects’ are just a roster filler in AAA and an incredible long-shot OF that will never hit bast high A, it’s a WIN.

        Paying all the cash the Cubs are is irrelevant. They don’t need it in their budget this year and it’s a sunk cost. Much better to get some ‘prospects’ back than to save payroll for the Cubs.

  9. WhenMattStairsIsKing - Jul 28, 2011 at 12:20 PM

    “Indians eventually replace Asian outfielder with the other Asian outfielder.”

  10. sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Jul 28, 2011 at 12:20 PM

    “Supposedly he is getting some small incentives to waive his no-trade.”

    How about the old Not Being On the Cubs Anymore incentive? That seems like a pretty good one for a solid baseball player.

  11. brianmoline - Jul 28, 2011 at 12:42 PM

    Cubs fan here…Indians are getting a solid player. He gets on base, plays good defense in the corner outfield positions and is a good baserunner. Won’t hit for much power, and he won’t steal bases, but he’s a solid major leaguer. Don’t play him against lefties, and he’ll do fine.

    • gmsingh - Jul 28, 2011 at 6:39 PM

      The Cubbies continue to deal good players when what they need to do is trade for a new GM.

  12. parlorboss - Jul 28, 2011 at 1:18 PM

    “Kosuke Fukudome is an Indian.” Dots or feathers?

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