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Report: Carrasco coming back to Guardians with minor league deal

Carlos Carrasco Cleveland Indians Carlos Carrasco - The Canadian Press

CLEVELAND (AP) — Carlos Carrasco is circling back with the Guardians.

The 36-year-old right-hander, who spent 11 seasons pitching for Cleveland, has agreed to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training with the team, a person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press on Saturday.

Carrasco is expected to be with the club next month at camp in Arizona, said the person who spoke on condition of anonymity because the team is not confirming the deal it until it is signed.

The Athletic was first to report Carrasco's return to the Guardians.

Carrasco was a dependable part of Cleveland's rotation for several seasons. He led the American League with 18 wins in 2017, and “Cookie” became one of the team's most popular players because of his warm personality and later for his courage in battling cancer.

In 2019, Carrasco was diagnosed with Leukemia and was sidelined for three months. He was recognized during an emotional appearance on the field during the All-Star Game in Cleveland that season.

Carrasco went 88-73 with a 3.77 ERA in 242 games — 195 starts — with Cleveland from 2009-2020.

He was traded as part of the deal that sent All-Star shortstop Francisco Lindor to the New York Mets in 2021. Carrasco went 19-20 in three seasons with the Mets, going 15-7 in 2022. Carrasco went 3-8 in 20 starts last season.

Carrasco was sidelined during Cleveland's run to the World Series in 2016 after he was struck by a line drive on his pitching hand in the final month of the season.