Milwaukee Brewers acquire OF Mark Canha from New York Mets

ByJeff Passan ESPN logo
Tuesday, August 1, 2023

The New York Mets continued to deal from their disappointing 2023 team, trading outfielder Mark Canha to the Milwaukee Brewers for minor league pitcher Justin Jarvis, the team announced Monday

The 34-year-old Canha was a vital performer during the Mets' 101-win campaign in 2022 and still had the third-highest on-base percentage among New York's regulars this year.

"He's a guy that we're excited to have," Brewers president of baseball operations Matt Arnold said of Canha. "He's somebody that's been a productive big league player now for a long time. He still is a versatile guy as well. Between what he's done over the course of his career offensively and also with the ability to play the outfield, first base, DH, etc., he's somebody that we think can help us here down the stretch."

With Canha's two-year, $26.5 million contract potentially expiring at the end of the season -- the Mets will cover his remaining salary for this year above the league minimum, but Milwaukee will be on the hook for the buyout of a 2024 option, sources told ESPN -- the Brewers pursued him in hopes of improving an offense that has been a weakness all season.

While the Brewers promoted top prospect Sal Frelick to buttress their order, Canha brings on-base skill to a team in sore need of it. The Brewers' .312 OBP ranks 25th in baseball this season, and despite one of the best pitching staffs in baseball, they are 1 1/2 games back of the Cincinnati Reds for first place in the National League Central and currently occupy an NL wild-card slot.

"He's probably going to play a lot of right field," Brewers manager Craig Counsell said after a 5-3 loss to the Nationals on Monday night. "That's going to move Sal to some center field, so we'll have to kind of mix and match with the outfielders. We have the DH spot obviously that's going to be in play too. Whether it's Christian [Yelich] or Mark with some DH at bats, it opens that up, too."

Jarvis, 23, was thriving at Double-A this season but struggled in three starts since a promotion to Triple-A, posting a 4.33 ERA with 102 strikeouts and 38 walks in 87.1 innings across both levels.

It's the second deal of deadline season for the Brewers, who last week acquired first baseman Carlos Santana from Pittsburgh. And it's the latest for the Mets, who dealt right-hander Max Scherzer to Texas and closer David Robertson to Miami.

Among those who New York could still move before Tuesday's 6 p.m. ET deadline: right-hander Justin Verlander, outfielder Tommy Pham, left-hander Jose Quintana, and relievers Adam Ottavino and Brooks Raley.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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