Mets Make Deal, Await Sasaki

In a swap of outfielders, Jon Nunnally was acquired by the New York Mets from the Boston Red Sox on Friday for Jermaine Allensworth.

Nunnally hit .267 with 24 doubles, 23 home runs and 76 RBIs in 133 games at Triple-A Pawtucket, where he also had 26 steals and 85 walks. He hit .286 in 14 at-bats with one RBI for the Red Sox.

Allensworth hit .219 with three homers and nine RBIs in 40 games and 73 at-bats with the Mets. He batted .264 at Triple-A Norfolk with five homers and 20 RBIs.

In other Mets news, general manager Steve Phillips said he wasn't surprised by outfielder Darryl Hamilton's decision to file a formal trade demand Thursday. By filing the demand, Hamilton in effect gets a limited no-trade clause through March 15, gaining the right to submit a list of six teams he would refuse to accept a deal to.

"He's bounced around a few times and likes it here and wouldn't mind having that sort of limitation added to his contract," Phillips said. "I can't see on March 15 him declaring himself a free agent. I don't expect that to happen. Unless something else happens, I would expect him to be a Met next season."

Phillips also said Japanese free-agent reliever Kazuhiro Sasaki will visit the Mets on Wednesday as part of "an international tour," complete with a chartered jet filled with Japanese media.

Sasaki, coming off arm surgery that caused him to miss the 1999 season, had 44 saves and a 0.64 ERA in 1998 for Yokohama, striking out 78 and walking 14 in 56 innings.

"He's going to throw for us and we'll meet with him," Phillips said. "It certainly would give us more depth in an already strong bullpen."

Phillips said it was too early to determine if the Mets can re-sign free-agent first baseman John Olerud, who might sign with Seattle. The Mets also have interest in luring right-hander David Cone from the New York Yankees.

"With any player, you consider how successful they can be for you," he said. "Can they handle New York? Can they handle big games? Can they handle playoff games? I think it's safe to say he checks out pretty well in those categories."

"David's attitude is to just take things easy," the pitcher's agent, Steve Fehr, said. "We're in a listening mode."

Phillips didn't know if Toronto's trade of Pat Hentgen to St. Louis on Thursday would make the Blue Jays more or less willing to deal pitcher David Wells. The Mets talked to Toronto about Wells this week.

"I don't have a read on that," Phillips said.

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