The San Diego Padres reportedly added some catching depth Monday.
According to Dennis Lin of The Athletic, the National League West team claimed catcher Gary Sánchez off waivers from the New York Mets. The 30-year-old has appeared in just three games at the major league level this season.
New York signed the veteran to a minor league deal earlier this month. While the team assigned him to Triple-A Syracuse, there was a stipulation that he would receive a $1.5 million salary if he made the major leagues and was added to the 40-man roster.
He made his debut with the Mets on May 21.
The National League East team then announced on Thursday that it designated Sánchez for assignment to reinstate catcher Tomás Nido from the 10-day injured list.
"The Mets will now have a week to trade Sánchez or pass him through waivers," Darragh McDonald of MLB Trade Rumors explained at the time. "The deal they signed him to came with a prorated $1.5MM salary for the year, which amounts to about $1.1MM from his selection to the end of the season. They could try to eat some of that in order to facilitate a trade but he will most likely end up released, with the Mets still on the hook for that money."
He now joins a Padres team that is among the most disappointing in the league to this point at 24-29 and 7.5 games behind the first-place Los Angeles Dodgers.
There was a time when this would have represented a major boost for a club in need of a spark. Sánchez was an All-Star and Silver Slugger winner in 2017 and an All-Star again in 2019 when he was a member of the New York Yankees. He launched a combined 67 home runs those two seasons and seemed to be one of the best offensive catchers in the league.
Yet he hit just .147 in 2020, bounced back some in 2021 with 23 home runs and then finished the 2022 campaign with an uninspiring .205/.282/.377 slash line, 16 home runs and 61 RBI in 128 games for the Minnesota Twins.
The power was still somewhat there, but he wasn't providing much else and has bounced around some this year since the San Francisco Giants also released him after signing him to a minor league deal.
Perhaps another change of scenery will help him rediscover his old form when he takes the field for the Padres.