Pirates sign 1B/DH Carlos Santana to 1-year deal

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PITTSBURGH – The Pittsburgh Pirates signed veteran first baseman/designated hitter Carlos Santana to a 1-year contract.

The deal is worth $6.75 million.

The arrival of the 36-year-old gives the young Pirates an experienced hitter who the team hopes will serve as a role model in 2023.

The switch-hitting Santana split time between Kansas City and Seattle in 2022, hitting .202 with 19 home runs and 60 RBIs. He provided some much-needed pop to Seattle’s lineup after arriving in a trade in June, slugging 15 home runs to help the Mariners reach the postseason for the first time since 2001.

The signing is also a bit of a splurge for the Pirates, who also acquired Ji-Man Choi from Tampa Bay earlier this month to help address an offense that ranked near the bottom of the majors in slugging and on-base percentage.

Rays’ Díaz gets $24 million, three-year deal, avoids arbitration

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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Tampa Bay Rays infielder Yandy Díaz agreed to a $24 million, three-year contract on Tuesday that avoided a salary arbitration hearing.

Díaz’s agreement could be worth $36 million over four seasons.

The 31-year old will receive $6 million this season, $8 million in 2024 and $10 million for 2025. The 2026 club is $12 million with no buyout. There is a $1 million assignment bonus that would be payable by receiving team.

Díaz has spent parts of six seasons in the majors with Cleveland (2017-18) and Tampa Bay (2019-22). He has a career average of .278 with 39 home runs and 198 RBIs.

Acquired by the Rays in a three-team trade on Dec. 13, 2018, Díaz hit .296 with nine homers and 57 RBIs in 137 games last season, He career highs with 71 runs, 140 hits, 33 doubles, and 78 walks.

Díaz was the third Rays’ arbitration-eligible player to reach a deal.

Reliever Pete Fairbanks agreed Friday to a $12 million, three-year contract that could be worth up to $24.6 million over four seasons. The 29-year-old right-hander was 0-0 with a 1.13 ERA in 24 appearances last year after beginning the season on the 60-day injured list with a right lat strain.

Left-hander Jeffrey Springs also agreed last week to a $31 million, four-year contract that could be worth $65.75 million over five seasons.

The 30-year-old began last season in the bullpen and transitioned to the starting rotation in May and finished 9-5 with a 2.46 ERA in 33 appearances, including 25 starts.

Tampa Bay remains scheduled for hearings with right-handers Jason Adam and Ryan Thompson, left-hander Colin Poche, and outfielder Harold Ramírez.