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Mets Send Three Prospects To Brewers For Keon Broxton

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Keon Broxton (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)

The Mets keep making moves aimed at helping them win in 2019.

The Mets acquired outfielder Keon Broxton from the Brewers on Saturday, sending reliever Bobby Wahl, minor league righthander Adam Hill and minor league infielder Felix Valerio to Milwaukee in exchange.

Broxton, 28, struggled offensively last season but had a 20-20 campaign in 2017. More important than his offense, he gives the Mets a second true center fielder to pair with Juan Lagares, rather than stretch Michael Conforto and Brandon Nimmo in center.

“Keon is a dynamic athlete with the ability to impact the game in the outfield, on the bases and with his bat,” Mets general manager Brodie Van Wagenen said in a statement. “He adds depth to our major league roster for 2019 and into the future.”

The Brewers, meanwhile, continue to utilize their outfield depth in trades. They shipped Brett Phillips to Kansas City as part of the Mike Moustakas deal last July, sent Domingo Santana to Seattle for Ben Gamel and minor league righthander Noah Zavolas in December and now have parted ways with Broxton.

BREWERS ACQUIRE:

Bobby Wahl, RHP
Age: 26

The hard-throwing but oft-injured Wahl came to the Mets in the Jeurys Familia trade with the A’s last summer and posted a 10.13 ERA in seven appearances. Wahl experienced a velocity bump last year after returning from thoracic outlet surgery, sitting 96-97 mph and touching 100 mph. He throws hard, but control problems have plagued him most of his career in addition to his injuries. He has an average curveball and fringe-average changeup he can use to get ahead of hitters, so if he finds the strike zone enough he has the arsenal for high-leverage relief.

Adam Hill, RHP
Age: 21

Hill was the Mets' fourth-round pick last year after a decorated three-year career in South Carolina’s rotation. The 6-foot-6, 185-pound Hill has the durable frame scouts look for in a righthander, and a three-pitch mix that allows him to project as a starter. He sits 90-93 mph and touches 95-96 mph with his heavy fastball and backs it up with a hard, mid-80s slider and a changeup that’s effective against lefties. Hill is too fastball-heavy at times but has worked to incorporate his secondaries more, and he showed swing-and-miss stuff with 26 strikeouts in 15.1 innings at short-season Brooklyn. As he improves his pitch selection and sometimes shaky control, Hill should ascend the Brewers' system as a promising starter.

Felix Valerio, SS
Age: 18

Valerio signed as an international free agent with the Mets in March and had a strong pro debut in the Dominican Summer League, batting .319/.409/.433 with 22 extra-base hits and 16 stolen bases in 67 games. His 84 hits tied for the league lead. The 5-foot-7, 165-pound Valerio is a small, speedy shortstop with the ability to drive the ball for extra bases. Valerio was not highly regarded when he signed and is a long way away, but the skills he showed in his debut put him on the radar as a player to watch.

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Bobby Wahl Shows An Uptick In Velocity

The recently-acquired reliever returned from thoracic outlet surgery throwing harder than ever, culminating in a callup to the majors.

METS ACQUIRE:

Keon Broxton, OF
Age: 28

The multi-talented Broxton has never really mastered the strike zone, striking out at a 37 percent clip in his career. Last year, he got demoted to Triple-A. Still, Broxton makes impact contact when he connects, is a danger on the bases and shines defensively in center field. He is a plus defender in the outfield with a plus arm, capable of making game-changing catches or momentum-swinging throws at any time. Broxton isn’t consistent enough offensively to play every day, but his defense, speed and righthanded power should help the Mets in a part-time capacity until Yoenis Cespedes recovers from heel surgery.

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