Before the New York Mets made the biggest splash of all at the 2015 trade deadline, they made a deal with the Atlanta Braves for Juan Uribe and Kelly Johnson.
With a little less than a week until the trade deadline in 2015, the New York Mets completed a trade with the division rival Atlanta Braves to bring in veteran infielders Juan Uribe and Kelly Johnson. The Amazins were in need of some depth, especially in the infield with David Wright‘s health concerns. The Mets were able to grab Uribe, Johnson, and about $500k from the Braves in exchange for minor league pitchers Rob Whalen and John Gant.
At the time of the trade, the Mets were getting two veteran guys to help with infield depth and be good in the clubhouse, in exchange for the Met’s 20th best prospect in Whalen, and Gant who could be a solid back end starter.
This was a good trade for both sides as the Braves were out of the race and cleared some salary for some minor league pitchers with some possible upside. Now 5 years later and time to fully evaluate the deal, let us take a deeper look.
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Whalen’s time with the Braves was short-lived for the most part. He put up strong numbers the remainder of 2015 in A+, and the following year in AA and AAA which resulted in being called up to the majors.
Unfortunately for the Braves Whalen’s success did not transition to the majors as he posted a 6.57 ERA in 24.2 innings. They ended up trading him in a multiplayer deal to the Seattle Mariners at the end of 2016.
Gant’s time with the Braves was also short-lived like Whalen. Gant finished up a nice season in the minors in 2015 with the Braves and was good enough in 2016 to get the call to the big leagues that year too. His numbers were not too impressive as he posted a 4.86 ERA in 50 innings. He was also traded at the end of 2016 in a multiplayer deal to the St. Louis Cardinals.
As for the Mets side of the trade, Johnson and Uribe’s time was well spent as they helped the Amazins reach the postseason for the first time since 2006 and their first World Series in 15 years. Even though they only spent the second half of the year with the Mets after the deadline, they had a huge impact while in the orange and blue.
In 44 games and 128 at-bats, Uribe did struggle a bit with only a .219 average and a .301 OBP, but he did slug .430 with 6 long balls and 20 RBI while providing a veteran presence in the clubhouse and decent defense at 3rd base. The numbers he put up in Queens were not eye-popping by any means, but his veteran presence on a team full of young ballplayers and timely clutch hits played out well for the Mets.
In 49 games and 128 at-bats, Johnson put up a slash line of .250/.304/.414, while hitting 5 home runs and driving in 13 runs. Just like Uribe, Johnson’s numbers were not all that thrilling to look at, but he also brought a veteran presence to a young team and gave the Mets defensive options as he played every position outside of pitcher, catcher, and center field.
Five years after the trade it seemed to have worked out slightly better for the Mets. Even though one of the guys they traded has had back to back decent seasons in Gant, it was after he left the Braves organization. The Mets traded two minor league pitchers with some potential and received two veteran infielders to help a young team pushing for a playoff spot.
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How do you think the trade turned out for the Mets?