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Source: Mets not ruling out a trade for an outfielder

New York Mets general manager Sandy Alderson walks

New York Mets general manager Sandy Alderson walks on the field during batting practice before a game against the Baltimore Orioles at Citi Field on Tuesday, May 5, 2015 in the Queens Borough of New York City. Credit: Jim McIsaac

With the July 31 trade deadline looming, the possibility of the Mets acquiring an outfielder remains very much in play, a source said on Thursday.

The Mets have long been linked to the A's Ben Zobrist, who would provide the kind of versatile bat that they covet.

In his career, the switch-hitting Zobrist has played everywhere but catcher.

The Mets, however, also are keeping an open mind, aware that supply in the market could shift their attention elsewhere. According to the source, it's far too early in the process for the Mets to eliminate any options.

A versatile outfielder would be of value to the Mets, who have averaged only 3.48 runs per game, ahead of only the Phillies in the National League.

Leftfielder Michael Cuddyer (.244) has been dealing with a balky knee and centerfielder Juan Lagares (.256) has been slowed by various physical issues during the first half.

None of the Mets' reserve outfielders are hitting higher than .200. That group includes Kirk Nieuwenhuis, John Mayberry Jr. and Eric Campbell.

The Mets also could use an upgrade at shortstop, which could be available on the market. For instance, the Brewers appear open to trading Jean Segura, according to a source. But such a deal with the Mets appears unlikely.

The Mets have shown no signs of being willing to part with any of their elite young starting pitching.

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