Mets Designate Gary Matthews Jr. For Assignment

The Mets designated Gary Matthews Jr. for assignment, according to the team. They also called catcher Omir Santos and infielder Ruben Tejada up and placed Luis Castillo on the 15-day DL in related moves. Matthews earns $11MM this year and $12MM next year, but the Angels are still responsible for all but $500K of his 2010 salary and all but $1MM next season.

Matthews, who came to New York in exchange for Brian Stokes over the winter, was a disappointment for the Mets. He hit .190/.266/.241 in 65 plate appearances and though Matthews' defensive reputation was a factor in the $50MM free agent deal he signed, UZR suggests he hasn't been an above-average defender since 2005.

Carlos Beltran's injury gave Matthews the opportunity to win regular playing time, but Angel Pagan's excellent all-around play means the Mets didn't have to rely on Matthews.

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