Johnson, O'Flaherty receive NL champs rings

Johnson, O'Flaherty receive NL champs rings

NEW YORK -- Braves veterans Kelly Johnson and Eric O'Flaherty each received a nice gift on Monday afternoon, when Mets Chief Operating Officer Jeff Wilpon and general manager Sandy Alderson entered the visitors' clubhouse at Citi Field with two 2015 National League championship rings.

"Any ring you get, you're excited and happy to get it," Johnson said. "It's a gorgeous ring. Who knows how many opportunities you'll have to wear it. But it's something you can always look at and know that it's special. We'd all like to have a World Series ring, but a National League ring is not too bad either."

The Mets took off soon after they acquired Johnson and Juan Uribe from the Braves after last year's All-Star break. Though there were a number of contributing factors to the Mets' surge, including the emergence of Michael Conforto and the off-the-charts success of Yoenis Cespedes, Alderson reminded Johnson that his arrival helped the team vault toward the top of the NL East standings and advance to the World Series.

"Anything like [the trade] initially catches you off guard, but then it ends up being pretty special," Johnson said. "I didn't know what to expect, and it turned out to be great in every single way."

Johnson batted .250 and produced a .718 OPS over the 49 games he played for the Mets last year. O'Flaherty, who began the 2015 season in Oakland, made 16 appearances after he joined the Mets in August, but he was not included on the postseason roster.

Mark Bowman has covered the Braves for since 2001. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.