Mets sign Rick Ankiel, he’s starting tonight; Jenrry Mejia to 60-day DL; Andrew Brown sent to Triple-A

Rick Ankiel 1 polaroidThe Mets have signed Rick Ankiel. He is starting in center field tonight, wearing No. 16, and batting seventh in the order.

4:50 pm: Ankiel told Mets beat reporters that he chose 16 because he was a fan of Doc Gooden when growing up in Port St. Lucie.

The Mets moved Jenrry Mejia to the 60-day DL to make room for Ankiel on the roster.

4:13 pm: Terry Collins told reporters that Ankiel will be part of a platoon in centerfield, getting the start against righties, while Juan Lagares will start against lefties.

3:44 pm: Ankiel, 33, was released by the Astros last week after hitting .194 with a .231 OBP in 25 games. Ankiel hit five home runs and drove in 11, but struck out 35 times in 65 plate appearances and walked only three times.

Ankiel will get a major-league deal, according to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports.

In his career against left-handers, Ankiel has hit .225 with a .632 OPS, 12 home runs and 53 RBI, with 25 walks and 138 strikeouts, in 477 plate appearances.

Andrew Brown will be sent to Las Vegas to make room for Ankiel on the 25-man roster, according to the team’s beat reporters on Twitter.

The Mets will have to make a 40-man roster move to add Ankiel to the team, as the roster is currently full, but that move is yet to be announced.

Matthew Cerrone, Lead Writer

4:00 pm: I asked MLB insiders about Ankiel after he was released, and – based on their reactions – I got the impression baseball likely saw the last of him. The fact that his name is being connected to the Mets, and their outfield, says more about the Mets outfield than it does about Ankiel, I think. He’s got more pop than most options in the Citi Field clubhouse these days. So, the Mets really have nothing to lose at this point. Sure, why not, bring him in, the more the merrier. At the very least, he can still play a strong center field, right?