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San Diego Padres sign All-Star infielder Robinson Cano

San Diego Padres sign All-Star infielder Robinson Cano
Former New York Mets second baseman Robinson Cano, shown May 16, 2019, was released by the club Sunday after designating him for assignment a week earlier. File Photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI | License Photo

May 13 (UPI) -- The San Diego Padres signed veteran infielder Robinson Cano on Friday, the team announced.

The New York Mets released the 39-year-old Cano on Sunday, a week after the club designated him for assignment.

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The Padres are expected to use the left-handed Cano at designated hitter in hopes that he can boost their offensive production. Entering Thursday's games, San Diego's designated hitters were batting just .206 with two home runs and 12 RBIs this season.

Cano also may receive some playing time at second base, with Jake Cronenworth shifting to shortstop and Ha-Seong Kim moving to the bench.

Cano sat out last season while serving his second suspension for performance-enhancing drugs. In 43 plate appearances for the Mets this season, he batted just .195 with one home run and three RBIs.

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An eight-time All-Star selection, Cano -- who was acquired in a multiplayer trade with the Seattle Mariners that also sent closer Edwin Diaz to the Mets -- appeared in 168 games for New York over parts of three seasons. He had a .269 batting average with 24 homers, 72 RBIs and a .765 OPS.

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Cano has a .302 career batting average with 335 home runs, 1,305 RBIs and an .842 OPS across 17 seasons. He has compiled 2,632 hits, including 571 doubles.

In a corresponding roster move, the Padres optioned right-hander Dinelson Lamet to Triple-A El Paso.

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