Robinson Canó and Padres agree on contract days after Mets release

Robinson Canó and Padres agree on contract days after Mets release

The San Diego Padres have reached an agreement with free agent second baseman Robinson Canó. The team announced this on Friday. Canó penned a grand pact, meaning he was included in the Padres’ active roster. In a related move, San Diego demoted right-handed pitcher Dinelson Lamet to Triple-A. Lamet had appeared in 10 games this season and had a 9.72 ERA in 8 1/3 innings.

Canó, 39, was released by the New York Mets over the weekend. The Mets had previously designated him for action after hitting just .195/.233/.268 (48 OPS+) with an extra base hit (one home run) and nine strikeouts more than walks in 43 plate appearances. His average exit speed of 85.4mph was 5mph slower than his average during his final season, the 2020 campaign shortened by the pandemic.

Canó was, of course, ineligible to play in the 2021 season after testing positive for performance-enhancing drugs for the second time in his career. He had remained a prolific hitter in 2020, hitting .316/.352/.544 (143 OPS+), but at his age there’s no telling how the layoff impacted his ability to produce at the big league level.

CBS Sports’ Mike Axisa highlighted the Padres as one of Canó’s most likely landing spots. Here is what Axisa wrote at the time:

Luke Voit’s injury has created a void at DH which the Padres have filled with a revolving door for now. GM AJ Preller is nothing but aggressive, and San Diego’s strong start sees them sit in a virtual tie for first place in the NL West. This is not the time to rest on your laurels. If Preller thinks Canó still has something in the tank, he could act quickly.

Voit has since returned to the San Diego lineup, but Canó’s addition could theoretically result in a DH move or second baseman Jake Cronenworth moving to outfield. The Padres have received lazy production from both midfielder Trent Grisham and right fielder Wil Myers and it’s possible Preller and the company see Canó as a more preferred arrangement if he plays at second base. Whatever the case, Canó will meet the percentage league minimum for the remainder of the season, with the Mets still hooked to have more than $20 million on his contract.

In addition to the Mets, Canó has also played with the Seattle Mariners and the New York Yankees. He has made eight All-Star games, won five Silver Slugger and two Gold Glove Awards, and has a career batting line of .302/.352/.490 (125 OPS+) with 2,632 hits and 335 homers.

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