The Mets finalized a deal Friday night with the Atlanta Braves to acquire the left hand hitter and utility player Kelly Johnson, and Juan Uribe. The new additions could potentially give the Mets’ lineup the boost they have been looking for and hopefully keep them in the race in the National League East.
Johnson was hitting a respectable .275 with the Atlanta including 34 RBIs and 9 homeruns. In his first game with the Mets and in their 15-2 rout of the Dodgers, Johnson went 2 for 6 with 1 RBI and 2 runs scored.
Johnson will provide much-needed support to the desperate Mets offense that entered last night’s game last in the majors in team batting average at .233 and only ahead of only the Chicago White Sox in runs scored with 231.
Another great benefit of this trade is Kelly’s ability to play multiple positions including second, third, and both corner outfield positions. The Mets have been tormented by injuries this season including Michael Cuddyer who was just placed on the DL. Johnson’s ability to play all over the field will be a useful tool for Terry Collins and provide great coverage if they were to lose another position player.
The 33–year-old has been involved in many trades and transactions throughout his career. Since 2005, Kelly has played for eight different teams including two different stints with division rival Braves. He is earning $1.5 million this year that the Mets will pick up, though the Braves have also sent some cash to help pay which was included in the trade.
Johnson also found a rhythm with the Braves. Despite a .251 career batting average he was batting .314 in July and had 4 home runs. He hopes his success will continue in New York and stated in an interview: “You find a good routine, and when it's working, it's hard to think about getting out of that, now the toughest thing will be finding that routine there."
The Mets also certainty hopes he carry over his recent streak and help the team which is currently 3 games behind the nationals in the NL East.
Together Juan Uribe and Kelly Johnson they provide some much needed support but the Mets still must look for another big hitter before the deadline to make them a true playoff contender with any chance of advancing in the playoffs.