Justin Turner, in town with the Dodgers to play the Mets, used the words "kicked out" to describe the end of his Mets career, and said he was left with a chip on his shoulder.
Turner, who landed with the Dodgers after the 2013 season and immediately became one of the best players in baseball, said during an appearance on WFAN with Carlin, Maggie, and Bart on Friday that "it's hard to say" whether he would have blossomed in the same way if he stayed with the Mets, adding later that he "would like to think so."
"I know what I did in 2013, start talking to Marlon Byrd about the different hitting philosophy," Turner said. "We were hitting four to five days a week for the entire offseason. ... I was looking forward to coming back and bringing my new swing into spring training. Unfortunately, I never got that opportunity. I was left looking for a job."
The 33-year-old Turner said the Mets letting him go put a "chip on his shoulder," "left a bad taste in his mouth," and that he wants to continue to perform well this series to "let them know they made a mistake."
"All I got was they needed a roster spot. ... they were gonna non-tender me," he said about their reasoning for moving on after 2013 -- before Turner signed a minor league deal with the Dodgers. "I was surprised. I think a lot of people were surprised."
After Turner was non-tendered, there was a report that the Mets were frustrated by his lack of effort, with GM Sandy Alderson saying "don't assume every non-tender is a function of money." Alderson said last October that he was happy for Turner.
Since leaving the Mets, Turner is hitting .300/.376/.495 with 73 home runs in 544 games over five seasons.
During his time with the Mets from 2010 to 2013, when he played in 301 games, Turner never hit more than four home runs in a single season. His highest slugging percentage during his Mets tenure was .392.