The news is not good for David Wright, whose rib injury could force him to start the season on the disabled list and be out for up to a month.
WRIGHT: Could go on DL.
Wright, who was scratched from last night’s World Baseball Classic game against the Dominican Republic, was examined today in New York and diagnosed with a strain of his left intercostal muscle.
Obviously out of the WBC, Wright doesn’t know when he’ll play again, but manager Terry Collins told reporters the All-Star third baseman could be out from “two to three weeks.’’
These types of injuries usually seem to take longer to heal than the original prognosis. As it is, two weeks takes us to the end of spring training, so being on the disabled list by Opening Day is not only conceivable, but likely.
The manager and general manager aren’t on the same page with this one, as Sandy Alderson placed the timetable at three to five days and offered nothing to reporters about Wright’s Opening Day status.
Nearly flawless in his last start, Matt Harvey took his lumps today, but on a positive note rebounded and regained control.
HARVEY: Gives up homer to Harper.
Harvey gave up a three-run homer to Washington’s Bryce Harper in the first inning, but rebounded to throw three scoreless innings and strike out six in an 8-5 loss.
Harvey settled down to retire 11 of the final 12 hitters against him; a very good sign for any pitcher let alone a young one after a rough start.
“I struggled there in the first inning, obviously. I think I came out a little too excited and needed to tone that down a little bit,’’ Harvey told reporters. “I made one bad pitch and it cost me three runs.’’
Harvey said he came out pumped in trying to atone for a three-homer rocking by the Nationals last year in spring training.
Bobby Parnell had a rough outing, giving up four runs in the seventh inning, which included a run-producing error by left fielder Lucas Duda and RBI single by Harper.
Jordany Valdespin is not an easy person to like, and especially hard to cheer for. Ask a question and he’ll often mumble an indifferent and inaudible answer.
VALDESPIN: Decked by Verlander (AP)
He exudes confidence on the field, but crosses the line with a brash attitude, tendency to showboat and not always hustle. Off the field he wears a bright red baseball cap reading “JV 1.’’ He often carries himself with an “I own the world,” persona that goes beyond confidence, so much that manager Terry Collins has warned him to tone it down a notch.
Last year, Valdespin fell out of favor with the Mets despite hitting five pinch-hit homers. He didn’t help himself in the offseason when he was suspended in winter ball. Even so, with Kirk Nieuwenhuis out with a bruised left knee and Daniel Murphy sidelined with a strained right side, Valdespin is being given every opportunity to make the roster in the outfield or as a second baseman.
Valdespin has produced, but with a caveat: He plays to his own soundtrack.
Have you seen Johan Santana?
I found Waldo, but Santana remains among the missing.
WALDO: Have you seen Santana?
That is the question of the day as the increasingly moody left-hander was nowhere to be found despite being scheduled to work out.
Santana has been irritated since the weekend when he threw an unscheduled bullpen session. Manager Terry Collins was unaware and suggested it might be in response to the suggestion by GM Sandy Alderson he wasn’t in top shape when he reported.
Santana, even with his string of injuries that would make anybody depressed, has usually been accessible and friendly. Now, he doesn’t acknowledge hello and blows off the simplest of questions.
Collins excused Santana from today’s workout when the pitcher said he felt it would be better off if he concentrated on physical therapy, such as stretching out his arm.
“We are day to day with him,’’ Collins said. “He’s ready when he’s ready.’’
Collins doesn’t have a date set, but it is closing in on time for a decision to put Santana on the disabled and let Jeremy Hefner prepare himself for Santana’s spot of the staff and Jon Niese to prepare to start Opening Day.
Good morning from Lakeland. Just arrived. The drive was a little over two hours, straight highways all the way through past Yeehaw Junction, dozens of orange groves, junkyards, farms and dilapidated motels.
The weather is nice, but it wasn’t a pretty drive.
The Tigers play in a place called Joker Marchant Stadium, built in 1966. It has been renovated several times. There’s a hill behind the left field fence, much like what the Mets have at Tradition Field in right.
The Mets’ bus just arrived and I’ll be heading to the clubhouse in a few minutes. The Tigers are taking batting practice and there’s only a few people in the stands.