NEW YORK — Catcher Bruce Maxwell, the only major league player to kneel during the national anthem in 2017 to protest racial injustice, has agreed to a minor league contract with the New York Mets for next year and will report to major league spring training.
Maxwell was in the major leagues with the Oakland Athletics from 2016 to 2018 and spent 2019 with Mexico’s Acereros de Monclova. He signed a minor league deal with the Mets last July 30 and was at their alternate training site in Brooklyn. Maxwell, who turns 30 on Dec. 20, has a .240 average, 22 doubles, five homers and 42 RBIs in 127 major league games.
He was among nine minor league free agents who agreed to minor league deals and will report to big league spring training, joined by right-handers Arodys Vizcaino, Oscar De La Cruz and Harol Gonzalez; outfielders Mallex Smith and Johneshwy Fargas; infielders Jose Peraza and Jake Hager; and catcher David Rodriguez.
In addition, infielders Luis Carpio and Mitchell Tolman agreed to minor league contracts without spring training invites.
Vizcaino, 29, is 13-11 with 50 saves and a 3.01 ERA in seven seasons with Atlanta and the Chicago Cubs, the last in 2019.
Peraza, 26, hit .225 with eight doubles, one homer and eight RBIs in 120 plate appearances with Boston this season and is a six-year big league veteran.