The Mets have signed veteran outfielder Nori Aoki to a major-league contract, per MLB.com’s Anthony DiComo.
At the very least, the 35-year-old Aoki will be a living, breathing outfielder for the Mets, who traded away Curtis Granderson and Jay Bruce last month and have lost Michael Conforto and Yoenis Cespedes to season-ending injuries. The only healthy outfielders on the Mets’ roster prior to Aoki’s signing were Brandon Nimmo, Juan Lagares, and Travis Taijeron—infielders Jose Reyes and Matt Reynolds were both pressed into duty as outfielders earlier this week—so Aoki figures to get quite a bit of playing time down the stretch.
Aoki is also under club control for 2018, so if the New York front office is impressed by his play this month, they could opt to bring him back next season.
The Mets will be Aoki’s third team this season and his seventh in the past five seasons. He started 2017 with the Astros but was dealt to Toronto on July 31 as part of a deal for pitcher Francisco Liriano. Despite the fact that he posted an .888 OPS with three home runs in 32 at-bats with the Jays, he was designated for assignment earlier this week.
In 258 plate appearances between the Astros and Blue Jays this season, Aoki is hitting .274/.319/.402 with five homers and five stolen bases.