After sitting out the first few months of the season, Kendrys Morales isn’t wasting any time getting into the lineup with his new team. Just days after inking a one-year, $7.6 million deal with the Minnesota Twins, Morales will play designated hitter and bat sixth against the Toronto Blue Jays on Monday night, the team announced.
Morales, 30, entered last offseason as one of the most prominent power hitters available, but ended up pricing himself out of opportunities due to the draft pick compensation associated with his free agency. Instead of taking a smaller deal, he waited on the sidelines until Minnesota came offering a prorated $12 million contract last week, giving him a pretty hefty payment for a few months of work.
Last season, Morales batted .277/.336/.449 with 23 home runs and 80 RBI in 156 games for the Seattle Mariners. In 2009, he was one of the league’s elite hitters with the Los Angeles Angels, posting a .924 OPS en route to finishing fifth in AL MVP voting, but suffered a major injury the following year while celebrating a walk-off home run.
However, he’s continued to be a solid player since the injury — he was worth 2.8 WAR to Seattle last year, per Baseball Reference — which explains the signing for Minnesota. Morales should be a significant boost to an offense that’s depended on the struggling Joe Mauer, Josmil Pinto and Chris Colabello for at-bats at first base and DH.
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Tags: Minnesota Twins