Jon Niese began his rehab assignment for the New York Mets with two inning to recover from a partially torn rotator cuff and might not be available until late August if not early September. While it might be tempting to shut him down for the remainder of the season, there is an importance of him pitching again this year.
First, for Niese’s peace of mind, he’d like to enter the offseason with an idea of where he stands physically. This makes mapping out his winter conditioning and throwing programs easier and alleviates a repeat of what happened last year with Johan Santana.
The more information the Mets know about Niese the better, not only for the left-hander’s off-season training, but also for their shopping lists. If they suspect a strong return from Niese, that could give them the freedom of making a trade.
How much Niese will pitch the rest of the season, nobody knows, but getting out there is important because it alleviates the wonder and there’s nothing more frustrating for a pitcher to be sitting home in December and January and thinking if he should start throwing.
ON DEALING BYRD: I have been against the Mets dealing Marlon Byrd because I’d like to see how strong they could finish as to get an idea of what to do in the off-season.
After being 15 games below .500, they cut that to seven games under after winning the first game of Friday’s double-header, but with a loss today they will again be ten games under.
The Mets have made it clear they don’t want to deal Bobby Parnell, which makes Byrd their most sought after player.
However, Terry Collins said this morning he doesn’t expect anything to happen by Wednesday’s trade deadline.
“You look at our team, and right now we’ve got some guys that are playing good,’’ Collins told reporters in Washington. “And I don’t know what’s going to happen the next three days. … If I was a team that was in a hunt, who had a couple of holes, I’d go searching and we’ve got some guys. But from everything I’m hearing right now, there’s no reason to think we’re going to change.’’
LINE-UP VS. NATIONALS
Here’s today’s lineup:
Eric Young, LF
Josh Satin, 3B
Daniel Murphy, 2B
Marlon Byrd, RF
Ike Davis, 1B
John Buck, C
Juan Lagares, CF
Omar Quintanilla, SS
Carlos Torres, RHP
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