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The silver lining to the Kerry Wood injury

Well, to the Indians bottom line at least. Rob Neyer reminds us of the vesting option:

The front office would never admit it, but Kerry Wood’s injury is just about the best thing that could have happened to the Indians, because it means he won’t finish 55 games this season, which in turn means his awful $11 million option for 2011 won’t vest (if Wood comes back in May or June and pitches well enough for the Indians to flip him to another team for a prospect, all the better).

They were almost certainly going to try to flip Wood anyway, but now the big worry -- that he wouldn’t pitch well enough to flip -- is no longer a concern. If he stinks, fine, they keep him and he’s gone after the year with no vested option. And of course, as Rob notes, if he pitches well upon his return he can still be traded. For what it’s worth, I’m not a big fan of these kinds of contract incentives because the existence of an “upside” to a player’s injury is a total drag.

In other news, there are plenty of tickets still available for the Indians’ home opener.