Report: Indians made 'nice play' for Bautista during free agency
Jose Bautista's decision to return to the Toronto Blue Jays appealed to many of the team's fans, and he reportedly chose that return over a similar pitch from the club that defeated Toronto in the American League Championship Series.
The Cleveland Indians made a "nice play" for Bautista in free agency, offering about the same guaranteed money as the $18.5-million deal he signed with the Blue Jays, according to Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports.
Cleveland was reportedly willing to consider a multi-year deal, but Bautista ended talks because he preferred to remain a Blue Jay. Sources in the Indians organization told Heyman that Toronto's offer to the 36-year-old was better than their proposal.
The Indians enjoyed a tremendous offseason, adding Bautista's now ex-teammate Edwin Encarnacion in December on a three-year deal. Bautista's market was slow to develop, and the veteran didn't sign his one-year pact with Toronto until almost a month later.
Bautista's deal in Toronto includes a mutual $17-million option in 2018 as well as a $20-million vesting option in 2019 that kicks in if he combines to appear in 300 games in 2017 and 2018.
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