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Former Phillie Cesar Hernandez signs with Indians


Cesar Hernandez is heading to the Indians.(Gavin Baker/Icon Sportswire)

The Cleveland Indians are getting the right side of the 2018 Philadelphia Phillies infield back together.

According to Jeff Passan of ESPN, long-time Phillies’ second baseman Cesar Hernandez has agreed to a one-year contract with the Indians. The deal, per Passan, will pay him $6.25 million.

This will reunite Hernandez with Carlos Santana, who he was a teammate of in 2018.

In theory, the Indians should have a strong infield. Santana, who was an All-Star for the first time in 2018, will play first base. Jose Ramirez will start at third base. Francisco Lindor, assuming he’s not traded, will start at shortstop. Hernandez will play second for Terry Francona’s squad.

A season ago, the Indians went 93-69, but missed the playoffs in a crowded American League. They’ve already traded two-time American League Cy Young Award winner Corey Kluber to the Texas Rangers, but they still figure to be a team that competes for the postseason in 2020.

In parts of seven seasons with the Phillies, Hernandez slashed .277/.352/.381 with 46 home runs, 253 RBIs and 325 walks. FanGraphs says he has been worth 11.6 fWAR in 2019, peaking at 3.8 in 2016.

The Phillies non-tendered Hernandez, 29, after the 2019 season, with him projected to make over $11 million in his final year of arbitration eligibility. They’ve since signed shortstop Didi Gregorius to a one-year/$14 million deal, making it likely that Jean Segura will replace him at second base. Scott Kingery is also a natural second baseman.

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