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Jed Lowrie: Mets' Other Acquisitions Made Me Want To Join

LISTEN: Versatile Infielder Joins Mike Francesa

January 16, 2019 - 2:34 pm
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By WFAN.com

"Jedi, welcome to the Mets. And may the force be with us all."

That's how general manager Brodie Van Wagenen commenced the Jed Lowrie Era in New York, with a "Star Wars" reference, as the Mets officially introduced their new infielder to the media Wednesday. Lowrie joins the team following three years in Oakland and has signed a deal worth a reported $20 million over two years.

On Wednesday evening, Lowrie joined Mike Francesa on WFAN to talk about signing with the Mets. He came to New York despite interest from elsewhere, and he pointed to other acquisitions that have been made when Francesa asked him why he decided to join the Mets. 

"It was a roster that had a lot of talent to begin with," Lowrie told Francesa. "You key in on the pitching staff specifically, and then you add in the bullpen arms that they were able to acquire this offseason, and then the position players on top of that. It's an exciting roster."

Lowrie has actually known Van Wagenen for a while. Francesa asked whether his previous relationship with Van Wagenen influenced him in his decision making.

"What factored in is that we've talked baseball for a number of years. So, to know how he thinks about the game and to kind of have a little insight into his vision ... I think it helped, but it was more than just that connection."

Listen to Lowrie's full interview with Mike Francesa above.

The the news conference, Van Wagenen highlighted the 34-year-old's versatility as one of the main reasons they were so interested in adding him. 

"Versatility is something that we have really wanted to create with this roster," Van Wagenen told the press. "The way we would see it, Jed would have the ability to play second base. He would have the ability to play third base, and he would be able to play shortstop. I envision him being able to do all three on a semi-regular basis, in terms of which position it is, but he's going to be in our lineup virtually every day. He's going to hit in the top of the order. His switch-hitting ability ... I think is something that's really attractive."

The Salem, Oregon, native put up career highs in home runs (23) and RBIs (99) last season. After 11 seasons in the big leagues, Lowrie has a career batting average of .262 with 104 homers and 509 RBIs in 1,109 total games. 

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In recent seasons Lowrie has been relatively healthy, but he has had injury issues in his past. He was asked about those previous ailments and whether he felt like he had successfully moved beyond the injury problems. 

"I feel great right now," Lowrie told the press. "I've had a great routine the last couple of offseasons. All you can do is preapare every single day for the long season. Just like Brodie said, you want to have a deep team that is versatile so you can cover all your bases."