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NY Mets: Five worst December trades the team has ever made

ATLANTA - JUNE 4: Infielder Mo Vaughn #42 of the New York Mets looks on from the field during the game against the Atlanta Braves at Turner Field in Atlanta, Georgia on June 4, 2002. Rainout. (Photo By Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
ATLANTA - JUNE 4: Infielder Mo Vaughn #42 of the New York Mets looks on from the field during the game against the Atlanta Braves at Turner Field in Atlanta, Georgia on June 4, 2002. Rainout. (Photo By Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
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ANAHEIM, CA – CIRCA 1981: Amos Otis #26 of the Kansas City Royals bats against the California Angels during an Major League Baseball game circa 1981 at Anaheim Stadium in Anaheim, Californis. Otis played for the Royals from 1970-83. (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images)

5) Mets prematurely trade Amos Otis to the Royals

On December 3, 1969, the Mets made the poor decision to trade Amos Otis and Bob Johnson to the Kansas City Royals for Joe Foy.

Johnson went on to have a solid yet short career. In his one year with Kansas City, he pitched to a 3.07 ERA working as a starter and reliever. Foy, meanwhile, spent just a single season with the Mets. He hit .236 in 399 trips to the plate.

Those two aren’t what made this such a bad trade. It was what Otis did with the Royals that left a scar in Queens.

Otis isn’t a household name for many baseball fans, but he very well could be. In his 14 seasons with the Royals, he was an All-Star five times. He won a pair of Gold Gloves, led the league in doubles twice, and in 1971 stole an American League-best 52 bases.

Twice in his career, Otis finished in the top five of the MVP voting. The speedy center fielder with pop had a dazzling career and saw plenty of playoff action with the Royals in the late 1970s and early 1980s. During that same time period, the Mets were in freefall and selling off players left and right.

The Mets missed out on a decade of what could have potentially been an all-time great center fielder in franchise history. Otis had all of the tools you want from a center fielder. He would have made for a great replacement for Tommie Agee—if the team had only waited a little longer.

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