After being rumored to have interest in him, the Philadelphia Phillies have agreed to terms with Carlos Santana.
With one big domino falling, as Giancarlo Stanton being traded to the New York Yankees, the market for offensive players sure seemed to loosen up at this week’s Winter Meetings. More trades have come entering the day on Friday, with big-name free agents still available.
The Philadelphia Phillies were among the teams with interest in Carlos Santana. According to Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports, the two sides have agreed to a three-year, $60 million deal.
Santana has spent his entire career with the Cleveland Indians, where he has played at least 143 games in seven straight seasons while seeing time at multiple positions (catcher, first base, third base, right field) over that span. He has averaged 24 home runs and 81 RBI per season over the last seven seasons, with a 162-game average of 25 home runs and 85 RBI as well as an .810 OPS.
With no option to DH nearly every day in the National League, Santana could see time at first base, third base and the corner outfield spots with the Phillies. Rhys Hoskins looked likely to be the primary first baseman, but he may now shift to left field. Maikel Franco is in a similar spot as a young player at third base, but he seems far more likely to not be displaced by Santana.
Barring a further move or two, new manager Gape Kapler will be challenged to find room for everyone to play regularly. Aaron Altherr made a solid case to be entrenched as the Phillies every day right fielder last year (.272 with 19 home runs), and Nick Williams may push for playing time in the outfield.
A more hitter-friendly home park should provide a boost to Santana’s already solid-to-very good power numbers, including a .196 isolated power mark for his career. But he might carry the most value as a player with some recent postseason experience, while also serving as a symbol of the Phillies’ desire to get out of the NL East cellar in short order.