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Mariners acquire Santana from Royals

The Seattle Mariners have traded for first baseman Carlos Santana

Kansas City Royals v Los Angeles Angels Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images

Carlos Santana has been traded from the Kansas City Royals to the Seattle Mariners, it was announced today. Seattle is getting cash from the Royals as part of this deal, and are sending pitchers Wyatt Mills and William Fleming to Kansas City.

Kansas City signed Santana to a 2 year, $17.5 million deal after the 2020 season. It was a move that seemed odd at the time, as Santana was 34 and had just slashed .199/.349/.350 in the COVID-shortened season. Santana slashed .214/.319/.342 in 158 games for the Royals in 2021, and is slashing .216/.349/.341 in 52 games in 2022. Of course, that slash line is good for a 98 OPS+ in this mushball year of 2022.

This is actually the second time the Mariners have traded for Santana, as he was sent to Seattle by the Philadelphia Phillies in December, 2018, in the deal that also brought J.P. Crawford to Seattle and shipped Jean Segura to Philadelphia. Ten days later, though, the M’s shipped Santana to Cleveland in a three-way deal that also involved the Tampa Bay Rays that resulted in the M’s getting Edwin Encarnacion and a competitive balance pick.

The Mariners are in need of offensive fortification with first baseman Ty France on the injured list with a sprained elbow and Mitch Haniger on the 60 day injured list. The Mariners actually have Justin Upton on their active roster and starting for them, primarily at DH but also in RF, right now, if that tells you anything about their desperation for a bat. The M’s are in fourth place in the American League West right now with a 34-40 record, but they are apparently not ready to give up on the playoffs.

Mills is a 27 year old righthanded reliever who has had success in AAA the last two seasons but not in the majors. Fleming was the Mariners’ 11th round pick out of Wake Forest in 2021, where he put up a 6.03 ERA in 13 starts as a senior. Quite a haul for the Royals.