February 3, 2024
MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. (AP)–The Minnesota Twins added a veteran bat on Friday, agreeing to a one-year contract with Carlos Santana that is worth $5.25 million.
Santana, who turns 38 in April, played for Pittsburgh and Milwaukee last year, batting .240 with 23 homers and 86 RBI’s in 146 games. The first baseman/designated hitter was traded to the Brewers on July 27.
The addition of Santana could help replace some of the offensive production that Minnesota lost when it traded second baseman Jorge Polanco to Seattle on Monday. The switch-hitting Polanco batted .255 with 14 homers and 48 RBI’s in 80 games last season.
The Twins are looking to go back to the playoffs for the fifth time in eight years. They won the AL Central in 2023 and swept Toronto in the wild-card round before they were eliminated by Houston in their AL Division Series.
Minnesota also has Alex Kirilloff and Jose Miranda at first, but they have been hampered by injuries and inconsistency.
The move puts Santana back in the AL Central after he made his debut with Cleveland in 2010. He spent 10 of his first 11 years in the majors with his first big league franchise.
Santana made the AL All-Star team in 2019, batting .281 with 34 homers and a career-best 93 RBI’s in 158 games. He also hit 34 homers for Cleveland in 2016.
Santana is a .242 hitter with 301 homers and 1,011 RBI’s in 1,930 games, also playing for Kansas City, Philadelphia and Seattle.
Additionally, the Twins claimed right-hander Daniel Duarte off waivers Friday from the Texas Rangers, who had acquired the reliever just last month in a cash trade with the Cincinnati Reds.
The 27-year-old Duarte had a 3.69 ERA in 31 appearances with a .211 opponent batting average spanning five stints for the Reds last season. He also had a 3.34 ERA in 32 appearances for Triple-A Louisville.
Originally signed by the Rangers out of Mexico in 2013, Duarte missed most of the 2022 season with an elbow injury and finished 2023 on the injured list with shoulder trouble.
To make room for Duarte on their 40-man roster, the Twins designated right-hander Ryan Jensen for assignment. Jensen was claimed off waivers from the Miami Marlins last month.