The Mets are saying Carlos Beltran played in an extended spring training game and went 2-for-6, but he did not run the bases. Basically, this amounted to a live batting practice.
Outfielder Gary Matthews was designated for assignment this afternoon and catcher Omir Santos was recalled from the minor leagues. Odd choice to carry three catchers. I would have thought they’d bring up outfielder Jesus Feliciano, who has been scalding the ball at Class AAA Buffalo.
Matthews had been playing terribly and getting less and less opportunities. Fans and posters here have been calling for his release.
Still no word on whether Luis Castillo has been placed on the DL. If so, expect infielder Ruben Tejada to be promoted from Buffalo.
The Mets won’t likely officially activate tomorrow’s starter, Jon Niese, until game time.
Expect second baseman Luis Castillo to be placed on the disabled list prior to tonight’s game against Florida. In compensating for a bone bruise to his left heel, Castillo has developed problems with his right leg.
This hasn’t been played out well at all. Castillo has been bothered by the bone bruise for several weeks now and only aggravates it when he plays. Had he gone on the DL weeks ago, he might be back and ready to play by now.
Ruben Tejada, who impressed the Mets during spring training, has been hitting better at Class AAA Buffalo and would be the likely call-up.
The Mets will also activate Jon Niese from the disabled list (hamstring) and he will start Saturday against the Marlins. Unless the Mets can convince Oliver Perez to take a minor league assignment, the Mets will have to option somebody to the minors. The choices are Elmer Dessens, Jenrry Mejia and Ryota Igarashi, the latter who has not pitched well since coming off the disabled list.
Based solely on recent performance, Igarashi should be the odd man out, but things don’t always work that way. Dessens was the last pitcher brought in and manager Jerry Manuel wants to try him as the eighth-inning set-up man.
The Mets have said they would not send Mejia down to stretch him out to become a starter, but that situation might have changed.
The ultimate irony: Perez holds his ground and the Mets option out Mejia. Then weeks later Mejia is brought back as a starter, and to make room for him Perez is cut.
Daniel Murphy sustained a high-grade tear of the MCL in his right knee. No surgery is required, but he will be out from four to six months.
The experiment of Daniel Murphy as a role player is on hold. It remains to be seen about his career.
Weeks of hard rehab work were wasted last night when Murphy re-injured his right knee trying to turn a double-play as a second baseman while playing for Class AAA Buffalo.
“I don’t think it’s real good,’’ Buffalo manager Ken Oberkfell told The Buffalo News. “The way he turned the double play was nice. He made the right pivot. It just looked like the guy got there late, and when Murph came down he never got out of the way once he planted his foot.’’
So much for fundamentals.
There was also a school of thought the Mets could showcase Murphy’s bat in the minor leagues for a deadline trade for pitching. That hope is gone now, too.
It takes skill to play in the major leagues. Also, timing and a little bit of luck. Murphy has had little of the latter two and it’s shame because he’s one of the very good guys as he would have done anything to help the Mets.
That now brings us to Oliver Perez. You kind of figured he wouldn’t be going away – at least in the way you hoped.
Until now, Perez’s selfishness has merely inconvenienced the Mets, an annoyance at best. In the next two days it could really shorthand them.
The Mets are still lobbying Perez hard to accept a minor league assignment to clear way for Jon Niese’s return from the disabled list. Niese is scheduled to pitch Saturday at Citi Field; it’s not known when Perez will throw a ball again in anger.