Ike Davis traded to Pirates

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NEW YORK -- The Ike Davis saga is over in New York.

The New York Mets traded the enigmatic first baseman to the Pittsburgh Pirates on Friday, in exchange for right-handed reliever Zack Thornton and a player to be named later.

The deal was announced just a few minutes prior to the Mets' game against the Atlanta Braves. Davis was made available to reporters outside the Mets clubhouse as the game got underway.

"Honestly, it's a little weird," Davis said. "I've been with the Mets organization for a long time, and made some really good friendships and stuff like that. That's the toughest part, I think."

"I really had a blast in New York. I made my dreams come true, childhood dreams come true, playing in the big leagues here. But it's just a stepping-stone. It happens to a lot of people, getting traded. Now [I'll] go help my team in Pittsburgh."

Thornton, 25, was pitching for the Pirates' Triple-A affiliate in Indianapolis. He will report to the Mets' Triple-A affiliate in Las Vegas.

The Mets filled Davis' spot on the 25-man major league roster with outfielder Chris Young, who was on the disabled list.

"We're very happy with the trade," Mets general manager Sandy Alderson said. "We're happy for Ike, in the sense that he'll get another opportunity elsewhere. It's a situation that we needed to resolve here, and we're happy with the return."

Thornton is 2-0 with a 1.23 ERA in four appearances at Triple-A this season, with eight strikeouts and one walk. An executive with a team unaffiliated with the trade described Thornton as a "soft tosser" and noted he was available but unclaimed in December's Rule 5 draft.

Alderson said the Mets considered taking Thornton in the Rule 5 draft.

"Thornton is going to give us more depth, and has pitched very well at the minor-league level," Alderson said. "He's not on the [40-man] roster so it gives us some flexibility there, but we're happy to add that depth. And with respect to the player to be named later, we're happy as well."

When asked for more information on the other player, Alderson was mum. "Players are named later for a variety of reasons, so I really can't get into it any further than that," he said. "Because if I were to give you the reason why the player's [not] been named, it would lead you in the right direction."

The Mets had a logjam at first baseman, with three of them on the roster -- Davis, Lucas Duda and Josh Satin. Davis and Duda are both lefties, so the Mets were expected to move one of them.

Duda, 28, was batting .275 with three home runs and eight RBIs in 40 at-bats this season. Davis, 27, was at .208 with one home run and five RBIs in 24 at-bats.

"Ike has done some great things here in New York, hit 32 home runs one year, and there were a lot of positives," Alderson said. "But we think Lucas has the same potential, he might be a little more effective against left-handed [pitchers], [and] we think he can play first base well.

"It was a close call. This isn't something that was so clear-cut -- if it had been, this might have been resolved months ago."

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