The Padres, who remain in contact with the Indians about Kluber's availability, are looking to flip the three-time All-Star or engage in a three-team trade to improve their situation at third base, sources tell Dennis Lin of The Athletic.
This scenario includes the Cincinnati Reds, a team also linked to Kluber this offseason, Lin adds, though the Reds don't appear open to moving touted prospect and likely Padres target Nick Senzel in any deal.
So far, no deal is close; the Padres haven't found an appropriate trade partner for Kluber should an initial swap be agreed upon.
Originally drafted by the Padres in 2007 before being traded to Cleveland in 2010, Kluber has flourished with the Indians. Since 2014, he's gone 83-45 with a 2.85 ERA, 1.02 WHIP, and 10.1 K/9 over 160 starts and 1,091 1/3 innings.
The 32-year-old has one year remaining on his contract but his deal includes team options for 2020 and 2021.
Cleveland's willingness to move their star hurler has been up and down throughout the offseason, but several teams have been connected in trade discussions.
In addition to the Padres and Reds, the Los Angeles Dodgers, Milwaukee Brewers, Philadelphia Phillies, Atlanta Braves, New York Mets, and New York Yankees have all been linked to the two-time Cy Young winner at various times since the end of the regular season.