WASHINGTON (AP) -Catcher Brian Schneider and outfielder Ryan Church were traded to the New York Mets by the Washington Nationals on Friday for outfielder Lastings Milledge.
In Schneider, the Mets add yet another catcher, following their trade for Johnny Estrada last week. In Milledge, the Nationals pick up a talented young player they hope can avoid the sorts of missteps that marked his Mets career and be a key component of their rebuilding project.
Schneider was given a lot of credit last season for holding together a ragtag Nationals starting rotation, but he struggled at the plate, batting .235 with six homers and 54 RBIs.
Church hit .272 with 15 homers and 70 RBIs, while tying for the team lead with 43 doubles.
Mets general manager Omar Minaya is familiar with both players he gets in the deal from his time as GM of the Montreal Expos, the franchise that moved to Washington before the 2005 season.
And Milledge and Nationals manager Manny Acta know each other from Acta's stint as the Mets' third-base coach.
Milledge hit .272 with seven homers and 29 RBIs in 184 at-bats with the Mets in 2007.
Still just 22, he was the Mets' top prospect when he made his major league debut in May 2006. Right away, he showed why he was so highly rated on the field - but also drew the ire of his team and teammates.
One of the most publicized episodes came in the town that will be his new home. In September 2006, a sign was posted in Milledge's locker in the visiting clubhouse at RFK Stadium that read: ``Know your place, Rook. Your teammates.''
Milledge earlier had been reprimanded for not running hard on the bases and had arrived late to the clubhouse for a game. He also rankled Mets management by making a rap CD that used offensive language.

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