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Looking back at the Washington Nationals’ trade for Lastings Milledge

Two popular players were dealt on this day in 2007 to the Mets …

Washington Nationals Photo Day Photo by Doug Benc/Getty Images

WASHINGTON – It was 14 years ago today that two popular members of the Washington Nationals were traded to the New York Mets.

On Nov. 30, 2007, outfielder Ryan Church and catcher Brian Schneider were dealt to Queens for outfielder Lastings Milledge.

Church had the best season of his career in 2007 with the Nationals, as he played in a career-high 144 games and had a career-best 15 homers while batting .272.

He played for the Mets in 2008 and 2009 and ended his career with Arizona in 2010.

Schneider broke into the majors with Montreal in 2000 and made the move to Washington with the Expos, playing for the Nationals from 2005-07.

He also set a career-high in games played while in Washington, appearing in 135 contests in 2004.

A product of suburban Philadelphia, he played for the Mets in 2008 and 2009 and ended his career with the Phillies in 2012 before becoming a coach in the majors.

Milledge made his debut in the majors with the Mets in 2006.

In his only full season with the Nationals, he played in a career-high 138 games in 2008 and had a career-best 14 homers.

After just seven games with the Nationals in 2009, he was traded with right-handed reliever Joel Hanrahan to the Pittsburgh Pirates on June 30 for reliever Sean Burnett and outfielder Nyjer Morgan.

“This is the first time I’ve seen smiles on his face,” Tony Milledge, the father of Lastings, told a Pittsburgh paper soon after the outfielder joined the Pirates.

“Everything now is like he’s born, like it’s the first time it ever happened. If he’s got a smile on his face, he can play.’”

Milledge ended his career with the White Sox in 2011. He was dogged by injuries and off-field problems during his time in the majors.

On Monday, former Nationals’ starter Max Scherzer, signed a 3-year/$130M free agent deal with the New York Mets, after he had a successful, seven-year run with the Nationals before he was dealt to the Los Angeles Dodgers this past July.

It won’t be the first time popular players with Washington ended up in Queens.