MLB News: Indians likely to tender contract to Drew Stubbs

The Indians will likely retain Drew Stubbs and not release him by the Monday night deadline, reports MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian.

Teams have until 11:59 p.m. EST on Monday to decide whether to tender contracts to unsigned players on a 40-man roster. Stubbs, 29, is in his second season of arbitration eligibility. He is expected to make about $3.8 million this season, per the estimates at MLBTradeRumors.

That price and the suddenly even more crowded outfield picture in Cleveland had made Stubbs a likely non-tender candidate, whereas the Indians would cut their obligations to the former Cincinnati Reds player.

GM Chris Antonetti had maintained the team could enter spring training with all five current outfielders: Stubbs, Michael Brantley, Michael Bourn, Ryan Raburn and newly signed David Murphy.

Stubbs hit just .233/.305/.360 in 146 games last season. He had only 17 steals after swiping 100 in the previous three seasons in Cincinnati. His hitting numbers have declined since hitting .255 with 20 homers in 2010. He still would have value on the open market, however, because of his defense and average hitting.

Per multiple reports, it appears that former backup catcher Lou Marson is the only player expected to be non-tendered by the Indians.

[Related: How crazy would it be for Indians to consider trading Michael Bourn?]