The New York Yankees announced that they have released Chris Carter. He had been designated for assignment on July 4.
Carter, 30, hit .201 with eight homers, 26 RBIs and a .284 on-base percentage in 208 plate appearances. They signed him back in February to a one-year, $3.5 million deal.
One one level, it was a smart signing. Carter led the National League in homers last year with 41 and drove in 94 runs. On the other hand, it was one of the emptier 40-homer years in history, as Carter hit only .222 and only got on base at a .321 clip. He slugged .499 which is fine in the abstract, but not for a 40-homer player. In short, he was dangerous if you made a mistake, but he wasn’t making things happen in a way a good player does. The Brewers didn’t tender him a contract in the offseason, making him available to the Yankees.
The Yankees are responsible for paying the rest of his salary, which is less than $2 million at this point. If anyone else signs him, they will be responsible for the prorated share of the $535,000 major league minimum.
The Yankees placed Nestor Cortes on the 15-day injured list with a left rotator cuff strain that will sideline the left-hander for at least two starts.
The move is retroactive to Monday and Cortes will be shut down for at least 15 days.
After Tuesday’s game, Cortes said the shoulder has been bothering him between starts and more so after he pitched five innings May 30 in Seattle.
“I took two days off and when I got to LA and threw that first day, I didn’t feel right,” Cortes said Tuesday. “But it was first day coming back from pitching so I knew it was going to be nagging a little bit. So I waited a little bit.
“That second day in LA was when I said something because it felt like I had pitched yesterday. So I wasn’t recovering in time.”
Cortes is 5-2 with a 5.16 ERA in 11 starts and has particularly struggled later in outings. Opponents are hitting .447 when facing him for the third time in a game.
Last year, Cortes was an All-Star and went 12-4 with a 2.44 ERA in 28 starts.
Randy Vásquez was recalled from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes Barre to take Cortes’ spot in the rotation and will make his second career start in Thursday’s doubleheader. Vásquez made his major league debut May 26 against San Diego when the Yankees needed a starter because Domingo Germán was serving a 10-game suspension for using sticky substances.