From Jayson Stark's blog on ESPN.com:
"Kenny Lofton -- Ran into Lofton's agent, Casey Close, who reported that Lofton has several teams dangling minor-league deals (the Reds being the only one that has been publicly identified). But Lofton has zero interest in a come-in-and-make-the-club kind of offer after hitting .296, with a .367 OBP and 86 runs scored last year. If a team wants Lofton enough to offer him a major-league contract and a roster spot, he'll be back. If not, he'll sit around and wait for some outfielder to get hurt. If that means serving as a midseason cavalry call, fine."
I had a feeling that last season was Lofton's last season with the Indians and I figured some contending team would offer him 5 or 6 million for one more year this offseason. Well, that hasn't been the case and I am surprised Shapiro hasn't jumped at the opportunity to sign Lofton. If all he wants is a major league contract and a spot on the roster then what is the problem? I think Lofton, Ben Francisco, Jason Michaels and David Dellucci can give the Indians similar production but Lofton can do a little more. Lofton gives us a veteran presence, playoff experience and speed (pinch running). I admit, I do like the Indians players from the 90's so I am a little partial but this just makes too much sense. I would like to see Shapiro and Wedge give Lofton and Mastny the last two roster spots and give Fransisco a chance to play everyday for Buffalo.
One last note - our bench against right-handed pitchers as of right now will be Shoppach, Carroll, Marte, Michaels and Francisco. If C.C. and Halladay/Beckett/Lackey are in a pitchers duel and we need a spark off the bench in the bottom of the ninth, would you rather see Lofton coming off the bench or any of the guys listed above?