Pirates sign first baseman Carlos Santana

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The Pittsburgh Pirates have signed first baseman Carlos Santana of Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic to a one-year contract worth $6.7 million according to Mike Axisa of CBS Sports on Saturday. The Pirates become the fifth Major League Baseball team Santana has played for following the Cleveland Indians, Philadelphia Phillies, Kansas City Royals, and Seattle Mariners.

2022 with Kansas City and Seattle

In 2022, Santana batted .202 with 19 home runs and 60 runs batted in. During 131 games, 506 plate appearances and 431 at bats, he scored 52 runs, and had 87 hits, 18 doubles, 71 walks, 162 total bases, was twice hit by a pitch, and had two sacrifice flies.  Santana also had an on base percentage of .316 and a slugging percentage of .376.

Struggled with the Mariners

After being traded from the Royals to the Mariners for relief pitcher Wyatt Mills of Spokane, Washington, and minor league pitcher William Fleming of Asheville, North Carolina, it was a struggle for Santana. He batted eight points below the Mendoza Line at only .192.

Two-time AL Leader in Walks

Twice Santana has led the American League in walks. He had 113 walks, which led not only the American League, but Major League Baseball too while with the Cleveland Indians in 2014. Then six years later while with the Indians in 2020, Santana led the American League with 47 walks.

2019 MLB All-Star

With the Indians in 2019, Santana was an American League All-Star for the only time. That year he batted .281 with 4 home runs and 93 runs batted in. Santana’s batting average that season was 89 points above his average with the Mariners and 39 points above his career average of .242.

Largest Contract since 2016

The signing of Santana is the largest free agent signing by the Pirates in six years. In 2016, they signed pitcher Ivan Nova to a three-year contract worth $26 million. Like Santana, Nova was from the Dominican Republic, as he called San Cristobal home.

 

 

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