Mike Nickeas Re-Signs with Mets, Fred Lewis Heading to Japan

Alex SchuhartCorrespondent INovember 14, 2012

Mike Nickeas
Mike NickeasAlex Trautwig/Getty Images

The New York Mets have signed backup catcher Mike Nickeas to a minor league contract, while outfielder Fred Lewis has opted to play in Japan in 2013.

Nickeas, who was granted free agency on November 6th after being outed off the 40-man roster and refusing a minor league assignment, inked his new contract on November 9th.

The 29-year-old enjoyed his longest stay in the major leagues in 2012, hitting .174 with one home run and 13 RBI in 47 games. In 122 plate appearances, he had 19 hits, eight walks and 27 strikeouts.

In three partial seasons with New York, he has hit .180 with two home runs and 19 RBI in 73 games. Despite his anemic bat, he holds some value with his good catching skills and acceptable defense.

Joining the Mets minor league system in 2006 after being traded from the Texas Rangers for outfielder Victor Diaz, the Canadian native reached the big league club in 2010 for the first time.

The speedy Lewis, who appeared in 18 games for the Mets as a late-season call up in 2012, also refused a minor league assignment following the season and opted for free agency. He signed with the Hiroshima Toyo Carp in Japan on November 9.

The 31-year-old outfielder batted .150 in 20 at-bats for the Mets, after hitting .294 with 13 home runs, 45 RBI and 25 stolen bases in 108 games for their Triple-A team, Buffalo.

The seven-year veteran signed with the team as a free agent on April 25, 2012, after playing for the San Francisco Giants, Toronto Blue Jays and Cincinnati Reds since 2006. He is a .266 career hitter.