Miami – Tyler Naquin has heard a commercial stir, but nothing connects him with the Mets.
That changed Thursday night, when he got a phone call in Cincinnati to inform him Mets got it. In the trade, the Mets also welcomed left-league left-wing saver Felipe Del and sent minor leaguers Hector Rodriguez and Jose Acuna to the Reds.
Naquin said before The Mets beat the Marlins 6-4. “I’ve heard a few things about the other teams, but every year you hear something about the trade deadline. I’m sure it’s going to start heating up here in the next couple of days for everyone.”
The addition of 31-year-old Naquin came on Travis Jankowski’s account. Jankowski is assigned the task to clear a slate space for Naquin, the hitter and left-hander.
Naquin, who didn’t play in the Mets win, came into play with a .246/.305/.444 slash with seven homeowners and 33 RBI, making the equation more than Jankowski, who has not been injured in his last 29 games at-bat. Naquin started his career with Cleveland, which included his World Championship appearance in 2016.
“It brings energy,” said Carlos Carrasco, who spent four seasons on Team Naquin in Cleveland. “Every time he’s on the field, he just goes out and plays and works hard. I really like that guy. I saw him the first time when I was [was] in Cleveland. It was one of the best opportunities they had and they raised him and he played well.”
Manager Buck Showalter said he views Naquin as a player who can help the Mets in any role given to him.
“He’s a guy who can play all three positions on the field, a left-handed bat, a good defender and bowler and runs the bases,” Showalter said. “He can bring some things that all the clubs need, just another piece that we can maneuver with and make a tough squad.”
Having Naquin would allow Jeff McNeill to play more on second base and not play as much on the left field. With McNeil in second, the Mets are free to play Luis Guillorme often in third, as Eduardo Escobar struggled offensively, especially against right-handers.
“I think because of Jeff’s versatility and the versatility of Louie and Escobar, it allows us to move the pieces around and keep everyone physically healthy and try to put our best foot forward every night,” Showalter said. “Not just pure matches, but when someone needs a day we won’t have a drop in performance. Just another way to attack the rest of the season.”
Naquin’s arrival came a week after the Mets acquired Daniel Vogelbach, another left-handed bat, from the Pirates. The Mets will head into the trade deadline on Tuesday with the help of a right-handed hitter and a bull on the radar.
Naquin welcomes the opportunity to play for a post-season rival, having escaped a last-place stalemate with the Reds.
“They’ve got a good team here, just all the way,” Naken said, noting that he faced Max Scherzer during the Mets’ trip to Cincinnati earlier this month. “It’s going to take the brunt for sure, so it’s exciting. … It’s a good football club, good staff and I hear it’s a good environment.”
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