Mets (finally) place Michael Cuddyer on disabled list and (finally) call up prospect Michael Conforto

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Michael Cuddyer has remained on the Mets’ active roster despite starting just two games in the past two weeks due to a knee injury. During that time (and even before that) lots of Mets fans were clamoring for the team to call up 22-year-old outfield prospect Michael Conforto for the his MLB debut.

Today the Mets finally shut down Cuddyer, placing him on the disabled list and promoting Conforto from Double-A to the majors.

For most players it makes little sense to play through an injury and in Cuddyer’s case he’s hit just .250 with a .683 OPS in 82 games this season. This offseason the Mets forfeited a first-round draft pick for the right to sign the 36-year-old Cuddyer to a two-year, $21 million deal, which is a move that received lots of criticism at the time and now looks like a huge mistake.

As for Conforto, he was the 10th overall pick in last year’s draft out of Oregon State and made quick work of the minors by hitting .308 in 133 games. He began this season at high Single-A and moved up to Double-A in late May, batting .297 with 12 homers, 24 doubles, and an .854 OPS overall. Baseball America ranked Conforto among MLB’s top 20 prospects in their midseason update, but with just 45 games above Single-A his readiness for the majors is unclear.

Cubs acquire Martín Maldonado from the Royals

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Last night Cubs catcher Willson Contreras was placed on the injured list with a strained muscle in his right foot. That injury inspired the Cubs to go out and get another catcher. They acquired Martín Maldonado in a trade with Kansas City in exchange for lefty Mike Montgomery, in a deal that was announced after the Cubs loss to the Reds.

Maldonado, 32, was a Gold Glove winner in 2017 with the Angels. At the moment he’s hitting .227 with six homers and 17 RBIs in 74 games. Obviously, though, defense is his calling card, as he’s a .220 career hitter with 57 homers and 210 RBIs in 686 games.

Montgomery, 30, is 1-2 with a 5.67 ERA in 20 relief appearances for the Cubs this year. He’s heading back to where his pro career began. He was drafted by Kanas City in 2008, though he was traded away in the James Shields/Wade David/Wil Myers deal in 2012. He made his big league debut for Seattle in 2015. Dayton Moore said last night that the Royals plan to use Montgomery in the rotation as a replacement for Homer Bailey, who was dealt to Oakland on Sunday.