Photo by Kim Klement, US PRESSWIRE
@JonHeymanCBS is reporting that the Indians will sign free agent first baseman Casey Kotchman, who had a resurgent season for the Rays last year, posting a .306/.378/.422 over 563 plate appearances. Kotchman, a left handed hitter, presumably will move to the top of the depth chart at first base for the Indians, though he may prove move productive as part of a platoon with Matt LaPorta, who is right-handed.
LaPorta may not have lived up to expectations yet, but he still hit 11 home runs and drove in 53 RBI over 385 plate appearances. By contrast, Kotchman hit one less home run and drove in 5 less RBI despite having 178 more plate appearances. The Indians already have a left-handed heavy lineup with Shin Shoo Choo, Grady Sizemore, Jason Kipnis, Jack Hanrahan and Travis Hafner.
I still think right handed Derrek Lee was the better fit here. With no obvious openings, Lee may now follow the lead of Jermaine Dye last year and head into retirement.