Mets sign ex-Blue Jays OF Kevin Pillar for 1 year, $5M US
Defensive stalwart hit combined .288 in 54 games last season with Rockies, Red Sox
Centre-fielder Kevin Pillar and the Mets finalized a one-year, $5-million US contract on Sunday night that adds depth and balance to New York's outfield.
To make room on the roster, outfielder Guillermo Heredia was designated for assignment.
The 32-year-old Pillar provides a proven centre-fielder and experienced right-handed hitter to potentially platoon with Brandon Nimmo. All three of New York's projected regulars in the outfield bat left-handed: Nimmo, right-fielder Michael Conforto and left-fielder Dominic Smith.
Pillar joins Albert Almora Jr. as right-handed-hitting options on the bench or in part-time roles.
The durable Pillar spent six-plus years with Toronto and also has played for San Francisco during his eight-year career, batting .262 with 82 homers, 88 stolen bases and a .299 on-base percentage. He is a .286 career hitter with a .784 OPS against lefties and was a Gold Glove finalist each season from 2015-17.
Pillar and the Mets agreed to contract terms last week, subject to a successful physical. New York is set to begin full-squad workouts at spring training this week.
Heredia played for New York and Pittsburgh last season, hitting .212 with two homers and five RBI in 15 games.