The Mets announced on Twitter Saturday afternoon that they have purchased James Loney from the San Diego Padres. Loney is expected to be activated after the weekend.
The lefty Loney will likely platoon with Wilmer Flores at first base until Lucas Duda comes back from the disabled list. He is a career .296 batter against righties, as opposed to .254 against lefties. He has hit 99 home runs in his career; 80 of them have been against righties.
The Rays cut Loney loose before the season despite having one year and nearly $10 million left on his contract. The Rays are responsible for all of that, except for the pro-rated minimum the Mets will pay. He has been playing at Triple-A for the Padres where he was hitting .342. A career .285 hitter, he batted .280 in 2015, so at 32, it seems like he still has a bit left in the tank.
James Loney was part of a group of young Dodgers that included Matt Kemp, Andre Ethier and Russell Martin who all moved up the system together in the mid-2000s. That core was supposed to bring championships to Los Angeles; instead, while they all played reasonably well, they did not do what the Dodgers had hoped.
But he is an excellent addition to the Mets — a solid hitter who will not embarrass in the field. Good low-risk, high reward move.