Melky Cabrera Signs Mets Contract; Won World Series with Yankees in 2009

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistJune 29, 2020

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA - SEPTEMBER 10: Melky Cabrera #53 of the Pittsburgh Pirates at bat against the San Francisco Giants at Oracle Park on September 10, 2019 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images)
Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images

The New York Mets announced Monday they signed veteran outfielder Melky Cabrera, who will be part of the team's player pool for spring training 2.0 beginning next month.

Teams are allowed up to 60 players in their pool before cutting down to 30 players on the Opening Day roster. The rest of the players will remain at anย Alternate Training Site.

Cabrera spent last season with the Pittsburgh Pirates, hitting .280 with seven home runs in 133 games.

The 35-year-old is going into his 16th season in the majors, a career that began in 2005 with the New York Yankees. He spent five years with the organization, winning a World Series with the team in 2009.

Cabrera's best season came in 2012 with the San Francisco Giants when he earned his lone All-Star selection, also winning All-Star Game MVP. His .346 batting average that season would have been the best in the majors, although he was suspended that year for use of performance-enhancing drugs.

The Giants went on to win the World Series that season.ย 

He hasn't been quite as productive since, especially struggling in the field. According toย Baseball Reference, Cabrera had negative-1.3 wins above replacement in 2019, which ranked ninth-worst in the majors.

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The switch-hitter has still been a reliable batter during his time in the big leagues, producing a .285 career batting average and 1,962 total hits. He will try to build on these marks for a Mets outfield that is otherwise relying on injury-prone players like Yoenis Cespedes and Brandon Nimmo.ย 

The Mets also added pitchers Hunter Strickland and Erasmo Ramirez to the player pool Monday, along with infielder Gordon Beckham and outfielder Ryan Cordell.