The Seattle Mariners officially activated outfielder Kyle Lewis Tuesday for the first time this season after he had not played in the majors since suffering a severe knee injury nearly one year ago.
In related moves, the Mariners released outfielder Steven Souza Jr. and shipped right-hander Adrian Sampson to Triple-A Tacoma.
Lewis was scheduled to start Tuesday as the designated hitter, batting seventh, for Seattle in the team’s home game against the Oakland Athletics.
The 2020 American League Rookie of the Year last played on May 31, 2021, when he tore his meniscus in his right knee trying to make a catch in center field. Lewis also tore his ACL in the same knee as a minor leaguer in 2016.
Lewis played in 10 games for Triple-A Tacoma, going 11-for-35 with three homers and 12 RBIs. He played in the outfield once but was used strictly as a designated hitter after that.
The 26-year-old is a former Golden Spikes Award winner as the best player in college baseball before being a first-round pick (No. 11 overall) in 2016. He has produced a batting line of .258/.343/.450 in three prior seasons with 22 home runs and 52 RBIs in 112 games.
Souza, 33, was 3-for-19 with an RBI and eight strikeouts in six games with the Mariners this season. He hit a career-high 30 homers in 2017 with the Tampa Bay Rays, but has only seven in 106 games since while playing for four different teams — the Arizona Diamondbacks (2018), Chicago Cubs (2020), Los Angeles Dodgers (2021) and Mariners.
Souza broke into the majors with the Washington Nationals in 2014 and played three seasons with the Rays.
Sampson, 30, had not yet appeared in a game for Seattle this season after being claimed off waivers from the Cubs earlier this month. He appeared in just one game with Chicago in 2022, allowing two unearned runs in one inning. He is 7-14 with a 5.13 ERA in parts of five big league seasons with the Mariners (2016, 2022), Texas Rangers (2018-19) and Cubs (2021-22).
–Field Level Media