In 2014, Turner batted only twice in the four-game NLDS against the Cardinals, going 0-for-2 as a pinch hitter. He doubled those plate appearances in Game 1, going 2-for-4 with a double on Friday night against his old team.
After missing four games in late September with tendinitis and a bone bruise in his left knee, Turner was 6-for-17 (.353) with a double and a home run over his final six games of the regular season.
"I think he's as healthy as he can be. He's got some tendinitis issues through his knees and things like that, so he's always a little bit sore," manager Don Mattingly said. "But it seems like he's had rest, and when he's rested, he's always good. The dynamic he's brought to us is he's the kind of guy that hits both sides."
From both sides might be a bit of a stretch, but the most important thing is that Turner hits right-handed pitchers very well. He's a career .296/.360/.438 hitter against right-handers, including .312/.383/.522 in 2015. Against lefties, Turner hits .261/.322/.383 in his career, and .248/.339/.413 this year.
The Dodgers were proactive in making sure Turner got regular rest during the season to protect his knees, rarely starting him more than three days in a row. But Mattingly said that, with the built-in off days Turner will be able to start every game at third base.
Turner was a Met from 2010-2013, hitting .265/.326/.370 in New York. Since joining the Dodgers he has hit .314/.384/.492 in two years. Since taking over the third base job in May, he has hit anywhere from second through fifth in the Dodgers' lineup.
Turner is hitting cleanup on Saturday.
He cited Mets third baseman David Wright as someone who helped him early in his career.
"David had a big influence on my career as far as he's the ultimate professional. He's there every day for you guys to grill him. He prepares every single day his routine that he goes through is getting lengthier and lengthier as his career's going on with his injuries," Turner said. "I think the amazing thing about him is he's there and he does it every single day. He reminds me a little bit of Clayton Kershaw. a Clayton's the same way.
"You just try to be a sponge and hang around them and learn as much as you can from them."
Mets manager Terry Collins had high praise for Turner as well.
"I've never seen him play, even when I was a field coordinator when we got him from the Orioles, where he didn't have a smile on his face. He loves to play the game," Collins said. "No matter where you put him, he gets you a quality at-bat. He gives you quality defense. Okay, he's not a flashy, flashy guy, but he's solid baseball player. And he was not only great on the field with us, he was great in the clubhouse with us."