Friday, May 24, 2019

Mets Sign Ervin Santana To Provide Pitching Depth

Ervin Santana. 

The Mets announced on Friday morning that they signed veteran right-handed pitcher Ervin Santana to a minor league contract pending a physical.

Santana, who has been an All-Star twice, with the Angels in 2008 and Twins in 2017, will be reporting to the Mets complex in Port St. Lucie, FL.

Santana, 36, has played in parts of 15 seasons in the major leagues with five different teams, most notably for the Angels (2005-12) and Minnesota, where he pitched from 2015-18 and was a 16-game winner in 2017 and started their Wild Card game against the Yankees. 

In 2018, he had surgery on his finger during spring training, and he didn't make his season debut until late July. He was limited to five starts, and he went 0-1 with an 8:03 ERA (24.2 innings, 31 hits, 22 runs (all earned), 9 home runs, 9 walks, 16 strikeouts).

In the offseason, Santana signed a minor league contract with the White Sox and made three starts in which he went 0-2 with a 9.45 ERA. He was designated for assignment by the club on April 26 and granted free agency on April 29.

The La Romana, Dominican Republic native owns a 149-127 career record in 387 games (384 starts) with a 4.09 ERA (1,101 earned runs/2,421.1 innings) with 754 walks and 1,926 strikeouts. 

"We all know what Ervin Santana has done in his career," Mets Manager Mickey Callaway said in his pregame press conference on Friday afternoon. "Great clubhouse guy, I know him pretty well. He's had a ton of success at the Major League level, you know, having said that, we have to evaluate where he's at, so to say he'll be just a starter or bullpen guy, we really can't predict that at this moment. We're going to send him up to Florida, get him some innings and let him progress, and see what we have. It's just another depth piece for us, and one that has some upside to it because, when he gets rolling, he can be a pretty good pitcher. He was an All-Star in 2017, I believe, so I've faced him many times (while he was Cleveland's pitching coach), I've been around him a lot, and he can pitch. When he has that slider going, it's pretty tough."

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