Leon is a lock to begin the season on the roster, Joe Noga of Cleveland.com reports. This doesn't come as any surprise given that the Indians don't have much talent at the position at the upper levels of the organization. What remains more difficult to project is just how much playing time Leon will receive behind presumed starter Roberto Perez. Leon is regarded as a strong framer behind the plate, which could help him earn extra at-bats when the season gets underway.
Leon signed a one-year, $2 million deal with Cleveland on Monday, avoiding arbitration, Jon Heyman of MLB Network reports. Cleveland clearly wanted to keep the catcher around after acquiring him in a trade from Boston earlier in the day. He lines up as the backup behind Roberto Perez.
Leon was traded to the Indians on Monday in exchange for Adenys Bautista. Leon served as the backup catcher for the Red Sox, and he will likely take on a similar role for the Indians behind Roberto Perez (ankle), who had surgery in October but is expected to be ready for spring training. Over 65 games in 2019, Leon hit .192/.251/.297 with just five home runs and 19 RBI.
Leon went 2-for-3 with a double, RBI and a run scored in Sunday's 10-5 loss to the Red Sox. The two hits nearly matched Leon's output from the entire month of August (three). Sunday's start was Leon's first of September, and his playing time behind the dish will likely remain scarce so long as Boston remains alive in the playoff hunt.
Leon will start at catcher and bat eighth Sunday against the Orioles, Christopher Smith of The Springfield Republican reports. Leon will crack the lineup for just the second time in seven games while top backstop Christian Vazquez shifts over to first base. Vazquez has shined both at the plate and behind the dish this season, so Leon isn't expected to see his workload pick up over the final few weeks, especially with the Red Sox trying to chase down a wild-card spot.