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Brewers designate Lorenzo Cain for assignment

Cain’s tenure with the Brewers comes to an end as he hits 10 years of MLB service

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Milwaukee Brewers v Washington Nationals Photo by G Fiume/Getty Images

Lorenzo Cain’s tenure with the Brewers has come to an end. Before today’s game against the Reds, the Brewers officially designated Cain for assignment. As a corresponding move, Jonathan Davis was selected from AAA Nashville.

In the last year of his five-year contract that he signed with the Brewers, Cain’s tenure with the Brewers has been up and down. He started out hot in 2018, earning himself an All-Star selection and a seventh-place finish in the MVP race. 2019 saw some regression, but his defense was still top notch. He earned his only Gold Glove award that year. Then came 2020, and with the COVID pandemic a massive concern, Cain decided to sit out the season after playing in five games. He returned in 2021 and wasn’t the same, fighting through injuries to play as much as he could. He still provided plenty of value on defense, but the bat wasn’t there anymore. This season, he fell off completely, posting a .179/.231/.234 batting line in 43 games.

The timing of the move is significant, because of Cain’s service time. He entered the season with 9 years and 99 days accrued. By waiting until now, the Brewers allowed Cain to hit the 10-year mark before his DFA, which will give him a full pension. Cain met with David Stearns and Craig Counsell this morning, and Cain said his DFA was a mutual decision.

What comes next is still up in the air for Cain. He’s going to wait in DFA limbo for the time being as he goes through waivers and waits to see if any other team wants to pick him up. If someone does, he’ll continue to play. If not, retirement is a possibility.

Adam McCalvy posted a few video interviews about the DFA.