Late Tuesday night, multiple online reports stated that the Cubs would sign former Tampa Bay Rays first baseman Carlos Pena to a one-year contract. No official terms were mentioned, but some reports said it would be for $10 million.
Pena had very good years for the Rays in 2007, 2008 and 2009, hitting 46 HR in 2007 and leading the American League in 2009 with 39 homers. But in 2010 he suffered the effects of plantar fasciitis, a debilitating condition in the foot that can be very painful, and he hit only .196, though still hit 28 home runs and drove in 84 runs while drawing 87 walks. He’s been in the postseason twice with the Rays, in 2008 and 2010.
Pena also has a reputation as a good clubhouse leader, something the Cubs can definitely use, and also as a good defensive first baseman, important with a young shortstop in Starlin Castro.
The signing is not official at this time, but the online reports said “the deal is done” and would likely be announced later on Wednesday.