The Mets have activated second baseman Robinson Cano from the 10-day injured list, according to multiple reports. In a corresponding move, the Mets have designated outfielder Aaron Altherr for assignment.
A quad strain went Cano to the IL on May 23, so he’ll miss only a bit of time beyond the 10-day minimum. The veteran was acquired with great fanfare in a blockbuster trade with the Mariners during the offseason, though Cano has yet to take off in a Mets uniform. The 36-year-old has hit just .241/.287/.371 (on pace for his lowest career totals in all three slash-line categories) over 181 PA this season.
Despite the struggles, Cano will resume his regular spot at second base within a Mets lineup that is slowly starting to make its way back to full health. Though the team is still short in the outfield with the absence of Brandon Nimmo, the returning Jeff McNeil and converted first baseman Dominic Smith should factor into the outfield picture, with J.D. Davis also on hand, the Carlos Gomez/Juan Lagares pairing in center field, and Michael Conforto holding down everyday duty in right field.
All of these names made Altherr an expendable piece, less than two weeks after the Mets claimed the 28-year-old off waivers from the Giants. This is now the third time Altherr has been DFA’ed in a little over a month’s time, after going from the Phillies to the Giants on another waiver claim. The constant roster shuffles certainly haven’t helped Altherr’s performance, as he has only an .050/.095/.150 slash over 42 combined plate appearances for Philadelphia, San Francisco, and New York this season.
This is the second consecutive year that Altherr has struggles, though the flashes of breakout potential he showed with the Phils in 2015 and 2017 could be enough to earn him a look on another roster. Altherr is out of options, so he’d have to pass through the DFA period unclaimed for the Mets to keep him at Triple-A.