On the same date Lorenzo Cain reached 10 years of major league service, the Milwaukee Brewers designated the two-time star outfielder for assignment on Saturday.
Cain, 36, hit .179 with a home run and nine RBIs in 43 games this season.
“It just got to a point where it’s probably time,” Cain told a small group of Brewers beat writers. “I didn’t perform as I would have liked, but the situation is what it is. I had a great career. I can’t really be upset about anything, but, yeah, it’s about time. I wish the best to all my teammates, coaches, trainers, everyone I have played or met with throughout my career, I wish them nothing but the best. For sure it was a really fun race for me.
Cain is in the final year of a five-year, $80 million contract he signed in January 2018 as a free agent. Milwaukee is responsible for the remaining $10,897,121 of this season’s $18 million salary. Waivers are unlikely to be claimed due to his salary. If he is released, any team can sign him for a pro-rated share of the $700,000 minimum.
Waiting until Saturday allowed Cain to be fully invested in the players’ pension fund.
“We thought once we got to that 10-year mark, which we knew was important for Lo, it’s important for any player as it should be, we thought that was the good time to sit down with him and pick his brain on what he thinks about and let him know how we see his role on the team and where we see him in the future,” the president of baseball operations said. of the Brewers, David Stearns “It was a good morning to do it. It was a good conversation. It’s never easy conversations either way, but I’m glad we had it.”
The center fielder played a key role for the 2015 World Series champion Kansas City Royals before signing with the Brewers, the team that originally drafted him before trading him in December 2010 to the Royals. The Brewers have reached the playoffs every year since Cain joined them, although he only played five games in 2020 before pulling out of the rest of this pandemic-shortened season.
“Without a doubt, he did his part,” Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. “In the end, it was time for this. It was just time.
If Cain harbored any ill will, it did not show.
“I would say it was mutual to separate,” he said. “We have a very good team. I don’t think I was contributing as I would have liked. I have the impression that they absolutely had to move. I certainly would have liked to play a lot better – contribute a bit more to the team – but unfortunately that was not the case this year.
“At the end of the day, it was fun. I think this team can go very far. They are really well trained, well managed. These guys play their hearts out. I will definitely miss them. It’s been a fun ride, that’s for sure.
Cain had a productive first season with the Brewers, making his second career All-Star Game appearance and finishing seventh in NL MVP voting while helping Milwaukee win its first NL Central title since 2011. Cain has hit a single in the eighth inning. of a 3-1 win over the Chicago Cubs in the deciding game at Wrigley Field to determine the division champion.
He won a Gold Glove the following season.
“He’s had an amazing career,” Stearns said. “I don’t know if it’s the end of his career or not, but if it is, it’s been remarkable. His contributions to our organization have truly been beyond what we could have expected. when we signed him, from the elite play to what we saw at the start of the contract he signed here to his clubhouse influence and the perspective he was able to provide our team. last two years.
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