Braves interested in Kelly Johnson, again
The Mets are awaiting the Braves signing of Kelly Johnson so they can trade for him at the deadline again
While we typically don’t write about other teams expressing interest in players that aren’t with the Mets anymore, Kelly Johnson and the Braves are an exception. According to David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Atlanta and Johnson are discussing reuniting at the beginning of the year for the third straight season.
As Mets fans though, we care about this story because the last two years that Kelly Johnson has started out as a Braves player, he’s eventually made his way to Queens and helped the Mets down the stretch.
In 2015, the Mets traded for Johnson and Juan Uribe at the same time near the trade deadline. The move helped give New York a big boost of veteran presence and clutch at-bats on the way to not only winning the NL East, but also winning the National League pennant.
In 2016, the Amazin’s again traded for Johnson. This time, with no Uribe, unfortunately. This time, Sandy Alderson and co. decided to bring back Johnson about a month earlier than the previous season, and it also paid off. Johnson can through again in big games against the Marlins, Phillies, and others in the last couple of months of the season.
Over the two half seasons that Johnson played with the Mets, he made an appearance in 131 games and had 339 plate appearances. He hit for a line of .260/.319/.441 over that span with 14 home runs and 37 runs batted in. It wasn’t a Yoenis Cespedes-like acquisition, but both times the deal was the right move to make.
While the infield is a bit crowded at the moment, odds are injuries could again have an impact on New York’s roster. With Wright, Duda, and Walker all coming back from serious back injuries, it’s possible the Mets could use more infield depth as the year progresses.
Next: Nine Mets players eligible for arbitration ahead of Friday's deadline
I’m not advocating bringing back Kelly Johnson next season just for the heck of it. But just remember: every time the Mets have traded for him, they’ve made the playoffs. That’s all I’m saying. Will we another deadline reunion in New York this year? Time will tell.