- Adam Rubin, ESPNNewYork.com
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San Diego Padres
The Mets have signed catcher Rob Johnson to a minor league contract. He will be invited to spring training. Josh Thole and Mike Nickeas remain forecast as the likely major league catching tandem on Opening Day, but the righty-hitting Johnson should present competition for Nickeas.
The Mets previously had signed catcher Lucas May. Vinny Rottino is capable of catching as well.
Here's the team's release on Johnson:
The New York Mets today announced the club has signed catcher Rob Johnson to a minor league contract and invited him to major league Spring Training.
Johnson, 28, spent the entire 2011 campaign with the San Diego Padres, batting .190 (34-179) with six doubles, one triple, a career-high three home runs and 16 RBI in 67 games.
The 6-1, 215-pounder had a 3.26 catchers ERA last year, the fifth-best mark among all major league catchers with 50 or more starts.
He led all major league catchers with a 3.22 catchers ERA (minimum 75 starts) for the Seattle Mariners in 2009. He also established career highs with 19 doubles and 27 RBI that year.
Johnson has hit .197 (128-649) with 35 doubles, eight home runs and 58 RBI in 228 games during his major league career (2007-2011) with the Mariners and Padres.