Carson Kelly signs with Tigers; Haase Released

Carson Kelly signs with Tigers
(Photo by Ron Schwane/Getty Images)

The Detroit Tigers have signed former Arizona Diamondbacks catcher Carson Kelly. In a corresponding move, catcher Eric Haase has been designated for assignment by the Tigers.

Kelly Struggled With Injuries

Kelly, released by Arizona earlier this week, struggled this season for Arizona, hitting .226 with one home run and six RBI. He missed the first two and a half months of the season after breaking his arm in spring training. For his career, Kelly is hitting .223 with 44 home runs and 163 RBI. He was originally drafted by the St. Louis Cardinals but was blocked by future Hall of Famer Yadier Molina. In 2018, St. Louis traded Kelly, pitcher Luke Weaver, infielder Andrew Young, and a Competitive Balance B draft pick to Arizona for team icon Paul Goldschmidt, who later won MVP in 2022.

During his time in Arizona, Kelly struggled to stay healthy. In 2021, he missed time with a first a broken toe and then a broken wrist. The following season, he sat out with a strained oblique muscle. The emergence of Gabriel Moreno, acquired with Lourdes Gurriel Jr. in exchange for Daulton Varsho in an offseason trade with the Toronto Blue Jays, made Kelly expendable.

Hometown Son Released

Haase, who grew up in Detroit, was released by the Tigers to make room for Kelly. Haase struggled with the bat this season with a .201/.246/.393 line. Back in 2021, Haase hit 22 home runs for the Tigers and looked to be their catcher of the future. Tigers manager AJ Hinch told reporters,

“It’s tough to deliver that type of news to someone who’s universally loved, respected. He had some really cool moments for us here. He’s worked his way to the big leagues, but unfortunately, it hasn’t gone great this year. He loves Detroit. This is his childhood team. He worked his way into our lineup and did a lot of things for us and for the organization…I was close to Eric. I think he’s terrific. I think he can help teams. It wasn’t working out here as well as it had in previous years.”

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