The Dodgers have signed Justin Turner to a minor league deal with an invitation to spring training, officially ending his tenure with the Mets, according to Tim Dierkes of MLB Trade Rumors. The 29-year-old infielder joined the Mets in 2010 and received regular playing time due to injuries on the 2011 team. Turner served as a useful utility player because of his ability to play all over the infield, although his defense was never sparkling at any one position.
Turner endeared himself with many fans and Terry Collins because of his hustle and hard-nosed play, while sometimes parlaying that into additional playing time. A career .260/.323/.361 hitter, Turner is a slightly below average offensive player, but could make his way onto the Dodgers’ bench because of an aging and injury-prone infield, with the exception of the inexperienced Alexander Guerrero at second base.
Meanwhile, the Mets will look elsewhere for a utility infielder, although internal options like Wilfredo Tovar or even Wilmer Flores can serve Turner’s role for 2014. If they were to acquire another shortstop, Ruben Tejada could be a useful replacement, as well.