The Mets have signed Matt Adams to a minor league deal that includes an invitation to big league spring training, the team announced Friday.
Adams hit .226/.276/.465 with 20 homers in 111 games last season for the Nationals while starting 71 games at first base. During his eight-year career, he has hit .261/.309/.469 with 116 homers in 818 games.
The 31-year-old Adams has played primarily first base during his career, though he has limited experience in left field.
Though Adams' deal is a minor league one and he can be sent to Triple-A Syracuse to start the season, it's a bit of an eyebrow-raising signing given the presence of Dominic Smith on the Mets' 40-man roster.
With the Mets likely to have a five-man bench and with the possibility that compromised versions of Yoenis Cespedes and Jed Lowrie will take up two of those spots, it's close to impossible to envision the more versatile Smith and Adams being on the same roster. It should be noted that Smith can be sent to the minors without having to be passed through waivers.
SNY's Andy Martino reported on Dec. 11 that the Mets were "actively talking to teams" about trading Smith. But with 10 days to go until spring training, the expectation has been that Smith -- who was the Mets' only legitimate backup first base option before they signed Adams -- would be part of the 26-man roster.
Meanwhile, MLB Network's Jon Heyman has reported that there currently no active trade talks regarding Smith.
Smith, 24, hit .282/.355/.525 with 11 homers in 89 games last season while playing first base, left field, and right field. He is under team control through the 2024 season and is not arbitration-eligible until 2022.
Whether or not the Mets are again talking to teams about Smith remains to be seen, but the addition of Adams at this point in the offseason is notable.