Garcia agreed to a one-year, $910,000 deal with the Padres, avoiding arbitration, Jon Heyman of FancredSports.com reports. San Diego recently claimed Garcia off waivers and, at least for now, the plan is to go into the regular season with him on the 25-man roster. However, it's possible he could still be cut loose before Opening Day if there is a roster squeeze. Garcia hit .221/.309/.304 with three home runs and three steals in 208 plate appearances with the Cardinals last season. Almost all of his value is generated on the defensive side of the ball.
Garcia was claimed off waivers by the Padres on Thursday. Garcia has a new home after spending the first eight years of his career with the Cardinals. The 29-year-old struggled in 2018, hitting just .221/.309/.304 with three homers and three steals across 114 games (208 plate appearances with the Cardinals). His overall track record (.248/.356/.339 career slash line) and ability to play multiple positions, however, should give him the inside track to break camp as a utility infielder.
Garcia will start at second base and hit eighth Sunday against the Reds. Though he sat out Friday and Saturday while Yairo Munoz manned the keystone, Garcia's playing time has been on the rise of late. Sunday will mark Garcia's fourth start in six games at second base while Munoz heads back to a bench role. Until Kolten Wong (hamstring) is cleared to return from the disabled list, the Cardinals are likely to continue rotating both Munoz and Garcia at the position.
Garcia went 2-for-5 with an RBI double in a win over the Royals on Sunday. The veteran utility man got the start at the keystone and delivered his first multi-hit effort since June 20. Garcia continues to fill in around the infield, and he's rebounded to an extent from a pedestrian July with a .250 average (4-for-16) thus far in August.
Garcia went 1-for-2 with a solo home run in a blowout win over the Cubs on Friday. Garcia took over at shortstop during the rout and launched a 380-foot shot to right off infielder Tommy La Stella in the seventh, his third home run of the season. The versatile veteran's playing time has taken quite a dive in July, as he's yet to log a start and has only six at-bats overall during the month. However, he's been typically solid during his modest opportunities this season, slashing .257/.331/.385 with eight extra-base hits, 11 RBI, 13 walks and 13 runs across 124 plate appearances.