MLB Rumors: Matt Carpenter Agrees to Padres Contract After Leaving Yankees in FA

Paul KasabianFeatured Columnist IIDecember 20, 2022

NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 23:  Matt Carpenter #24 of the New York Yankees bats during Game 4 of the ALCS between the Houston Astros and the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium on Sunday, October 23, 2022 in New York, New York. (Photo by Mary DeCicco/MLB Photos via Getty Images)
Mary DeCicco/MLB Photos via Getty Images

The San Diego Padres agreed to a deal with free-agent utility man Matt Carpenter on Tuesday, per AJ Cassavell of MLB.com.

It's a one-year contract with a 2024 player option. Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic provided the financial details:

Ken Rosenthal @Ken_Rosenthal

Carpenter is guaranteed $12M and could earn a maximum of $21M over two years if he exercises player option and all of his salary escalators and incentives are earned. <a href="https://t.co/wZrJ1NTDCy">https://t.co/wZrJ1NTDCy</a>

Carpenter is expected to play first base, left field, right field and designated hitter and possibly backup at second and third base as well, per Cassavell.

The 37-year-old enjoyed a renaissance season last year thanks to 15 home runs and 37 RBI in just 47 games last season for the New York Yankees. The three-time All-Star hit .305 and posted a 1.138 OPS as well.

It was a shocking turnaround after Carpenter hit just .176 (.605 OPS) with seven home runs and 45 RBI in 180 games for the St. Louis Cardinals over the 2020 and 2021 seasons.

He signed as a free agent with the Texas Rangers in March but did not make the major league roster. Carpenter hit .275 with six home runs in 21 games for the Triple-A Round Rock Express before the Yankees signed him to a major league contract in May.

Carpenter tirelessly worked to remake his swing, making multiple stops across the United States in hopes of doing so, per Rosenthal.

He got the job done and helped the Yankees win the American League East crown en route to a 99-win season.

Unfortunately, Carpenter's regular season was cut short after he suffered a broken left foot fouling off a pitch Aug. 8. He was able to return for the playoffs, though.

Carpenter is going from one contender to another as he joins a Padres squad that reached the National League Championship Series last season after upsetting the New York Mets and Los Angeles Dodgers.

His inclusion on the roster helps keep the Padres in contention for the pennant, especially after the team added Boston Red Sox shortstop Xander Bogaerts in free agency.