New York Mets Injury Report: September 14, 2020

With about two weeks worth of games left, the New York Mets have plenty of work to do to get themselves in a postseason spot. Will any key players return to action soon during the last few games?

Jeff McNeil is day-to-day after leaving Sunday’s game with “gastrointestinal discomfort” or, in other words, a stomach ache. Diarrhea is a COVID-19 symptom, but it currently seems like the issue is only a one-day issue for McNeil. He should return to the lineup on Tuesday.

Jake Marisnick is sidelined with a right hamstring injury that hampered him earlier in the season. The is no word on how long he will spend on the sidelines, but the Mets have not opted for an IL stint yet. As one of their best hitters against lefties, they will need his bat in the lineup as soon as possible.

Instead of optioning Franklyn Kilome, the Mets sent him to the 10-day IL with a split fingernail. It should not take a long time to recover, but the Mets may not need him back soon. Erasmo Ramirez took his role as a long man in the bullpen.

Dellin You There?

Dellin Betances played catch on Friday for the first time since landing on the IL with a right lat issue. His timetable to return is questionable, and the earliest the Mets should have him back is during the last week of the season. If the Mets are out of the race, we may not see him throw another pitch this season.

Corey Oswalt (right biceps tendinitis) and Tomas Nido (COVID-19) are two players who the Mets have been silent about. Both resumed baseball activities but have not returned to the active roster. For Nido, the acquisition of Robinson Chirinos closed out an opportunity for Nido to return when cleared.

Robert Gsellman, Rene Rivera, and Eduardo Nunez are out for the season with their respective injuries. When healthy, they did not provide much for the Mets, combining on for a -0.4 WAR.

Noah Syndergaard is still rehabbing from Tommy John Surgery as he looks forward to the 2020 season.

Also, if you are wondering, yes, Jed Lowrie will not touch a baseball field this season. Even manager Luis Rojas said he has no idea what Lowrie is doing.

New York Mets Injury Report (8/6/20)

New York Mets, Marcus Stroman

The New York Mets injuries piled up over the second week of the season and it decimated three-quarters of their infield. Here is a look at all of the injuries the Mets are dealing with.

Amed Rosario has left quad tightness that he suffered during Monday’s game against the Atlanta Braves. The injury kept him out of both games against the Washington Nationals but it was not serious enough to put him on the Injured List. He should return to the lineup during the weekend.

Robinson Cano landed on the 10-day IL after a Grade 2 left adductor strain. He suffered the injury attempting to score from second on an infield single and sliding into home plate. It was clear Cano would suffer some type of injury when he had to run at 100%. Cano is confident he will be ready to play once his stint on the IL finishes.

Jeff McNeil has an intercostal strain that kept him out for the last three games. He also sees the injury as minor and should expect to find time in the lineup over the weekend. J.D. Davis solid defense at third base gives real question to McNeil possibly playing left field when he is healthy.

Depth Injuries

Rene Rivera hyperextended his elbow after only two games in 2020. His timetable for a return is unclear but the Mets likely will not carry a third catcher when the roster shrinks on Thursday.

Jake Marisnick has a left hamstring strain which has plagued him since summer camp began. He is scheduled to come off the IL over the weekend but the Mets trading for Billy Hamilton shows the injury is severe. Hamilton was brought in to replace the defense of Marisnick on the roster.

Eduardo Nunez has a left knee contusion he suffered attempting to beat out a ground ball. There is no timetable for his return and upon it he will be unlikely to make the 28-man roster with the play of Andres Gimenez and Luis Guillorme.

Marcus Stroman threw a four-inning simulated game last Friday and is scheduled to throw another on Thursday in Brooklyn. HIs left calf tear has kept him out through the first two weeks of the season but the Mets rotation needs him back. The biggest challenge for Stroman is to field his position. It clear he can pitch but he cannot move off the mound at 100%.

Robert Gsellman should return within the next few days from right triceps tightness. He still has to throw live batting practice but will join the Mets as soon as healthy. Gsellman will be a good addition to the Mets’ middle relief core.

Brad Brach tested positive for COVID-19, which landed him on the IL. He should return a few days after Gsellman and started throwing bullpen sessions during the week. Much like Gsellman, Brach sures up the middle relief core.

Long Term Injuries

Noah Syndergaard started throwing in his recovery from Tommy John Surgery. He had a catch with 2020 draft pick, J.T. Ginn, about a week ago but will not see the field until the 2021 season.

Jed Lowrie’s season came to an end when he landed on the 45-day IL with PCL laxity in his left knee. It affirmatively ended his Mets career, recording zero hits and going down as one of the worst contracts in Mets history.

New York Mets: Jed Lowrie Heading to the Injured List

An official statement of Jed Lowrie‘s poor health has become as natural as the sun rising every morning. The little amount of hope the New York Mets had in Lowrie quickly evaporated when he headed to the Injured List with left knee discomfort.

Lowrie was running bases and taking reps in the field but still could not play without the leg brace. Manager Luis Rojas said he was not at a level to contribute competitively. Lowrie will visit Dr. David Altcheck to figure out where they go moving forward. Surgery is off the table for now, but his leg health is on par with Derrick Rose of the NBA.

Back to the Bench

Lowrie’s trip to the injured list opens up a 30-man roster spot when the Mets open up Friday. He would have been a bench player anyway, and filling his place with Luis Guillorme provides a much better glove and maybe a better point at this point in Lowrie’s career. It also highlights another blunder made by Brodie Van Wagenen during his first offseason with the Mets.

Not as notable is the lower back injury causing Walker Lockett to head to IL. Likely a swingman at best, he was battling for a spot as an extra starter on the roster. Either Corey Oswalt or Stephen Gonsalves are likely to replace him in the bullpen.

Brad Brach and Jared Hughes are also IL members, likely due to COVID-19, and have no time table to return. Add Robert Gsellman‘s right tricep issues, and the Mets bullpen is quickly thinning. The back end group still suits well, but anything past that is becoming a significant question.

New York Mets: Second Base Options Without Robinson Cano

New York Mets’ second baseman, Robinson Cano’s absence from summer camp, is a growing issue each day. The Mets have no timetable for his return, and they will need to figure out a replacement if he is not ready for opening weekend in just ten days.

Jeff McNeil

The obvious choice comes in moving Jeff McNeil to second base. Though his best defensive position is at third base, his production at second base would rank with the best in baseball. With moving McNeil to second, third base needs a replacement.

For the best offense, J.D. Davis moves to third, which allows the combination of Yoenis Cespedes and Dominic Smith to play a majority of the time in left field. Defensively, a healthy Jed Lowrie moves to third, allowing Davis/Cespedes to split DH and left field.

Jed Lowrie

If Jed Lowrie is ever healthy enough to play consistently, he is the simplest option. Lowrie has been a second baseman since 2016 and allows McNeil to remain at third base. He is likely the only switch hitter to stay on the Mets 30-man roster when camp breaks. With his damaged legs, at an older age, it is safe to assume his defense is not what it used to be but could hold the position if Cano is only out for a short period.

Andres Gimenez

Things get interesting with Andres Gimenez. The natural shortstop and top prospect is a long shot at earning a starting job in 2020. He has only played 26 games at second base throughout the minors but is a high upside option should the Mets turn to him for a 60-game sprint.

Due to the Mets’ “win-now” mentality, he needs a very impressive summer camp for the Mets to give him the nod to play every day at second base. During the 30-man roster period, he should see a couple of games there, without Cano, but anything more is unlikely at the moment.

New York Mets: Cespedes goes yard against Lugo; Lowrie doubles off deGrom

New York Mets, Yeonis Cespedes

The New York Mets‘ training camp at Citi Field is filled with competition. The latest intrasquad game, held on Thursday, wasn’t without some exciting moments involving some of the team’s brightest stars.

Jacob deGrom was supposed, and rightfully so, to be the highlight of the day until rehabbing slugger Yoenis Cespedes stole the show with a huge two-run home run off star late-inning reliever Seth Lugo.

According to Anthony DiComo, Céspedes turned around without running the bases and walked casually back to the dugout after hitting the moonshot.

Of course, this is all practice reps, but the development is noteworthy because Lugo was among the best bullpen arms not only in the New York Mets, but in the major leagues last season, with a sparkling 2.70 ERA in 80 frames.

Additionally, Cespedes has all eyes on him after failing to play since July 2018 with multiple heel and ankle surgeries. He even made the news after being involved in an accident with a wild boar at his ranch that resulted in the ankle injury and, subsequently, in the Mets lowering his base salary.

After months of an intense and slow rehab process, Cespedes is already batting, running, catching fly balls in the outfield and even taking some grounds at first base. He seems firmly entrenched as the Mets’ first option for the designated hitter spot.

Lowrie making strides for the Mets

Another positive development after Thursday’s intrasquad action was Jed Lowrie showing some signs of life after being limited all spring with a left knee injury.

He had been wearing a large brace for months, and even though he is transitioning to a lighter one, he still isn’t out of the woods yet. Yesterday, he managed to hit a double to the warning track in center field, against deGrom, no less.

His baserunning and overall movement remains limited, but he was able to job to second base and went around to score a few moments later. That was the only run that deGrom conceded in his three innings of work.

New York Mets: Jed Lowrie to Fully Participate in Camp

After a long year and a half, Jed Lowrie can finally participate in all baseball activities. The 36-year old only appeared in nine games for the New York Mets in 2019 and could not spend any time in the field. Most of the time, we have seen Lowrie with the Mets, he wears leg braces reminiscent of Forrest Gump’s.

Lowrie went through a series of different workouts on Sunday, and Mets manager Luis Rojas gave him the thumbs up to move on without the leg brace. This is the first time in 2020 that he goes through baseball activities without the 3/4 brace. Rojas says the Mets will be very cautious going forward due to the extensive injuries Lowrie suffered.

Anything is Better Than Nothing

Lowrie signed a two-year/$20 million deal before 2019. Combining a “kinetic chain” of leg injuries along with his contract and the Mets had someone who was untradable during the offseason. Lowrie gives the Mets value as their only switch hitter and someone who plays all four positions in the infield.

Even if Lowrie is fully healthy for opening day, Andres Gimenez or Eduardo Nunez likely join him on the roster as insurance plans. Gimenez sticks if they need him long term, and Nunez stays if they needed him for 1-2 weeks. The last time Lowrie was fully healthy, he made his first All-Star team, and they would be happy to get even 75% of that contribution in 2020.

 

New York Mets injury report: Cespedes sprinting, Lowrie still on brace

For a regular baseball player, running sprints is just another part of their training routine. For a guy that hasn’t played since July 2018, though, and is looking to make his mark in the last year of his contract, it is a significant development. Yoenis Cespedes, after months of being unable to run at full speed, did just that in the New York Mets‘ Citi Field on Friday night.

He also played catch with his throwing partner Johneshwy Fargas, per MLB.com. The sprinting is a giant step in the right direction for the Mets’ outfielder, who has missed the last year (and change) with multiple heel and ankle surgeries. He seems an awful lot closer now.

“We’ll see in the upcoming days in camp when we start ramping it up more and we get involved into the bases and all that where he is as far as that,” manager Luis Rojas said earlier in the day. “But I know he was in progression and I heard really good things about it, and I can’t wait to see Céspedes myself.”

With the addition of the designated hitter in the National League, the New York Mets stand to be among the biggest beneficiaries because they can plug Cespedes in that slot and bring him along slowly. They also have other candidates such as J.D. Davis, Dom Smith and Robinson Cano.

Lowrie still a question mark for the Mets

While the Mets got good news on Cespedes, infielder Jed Lowrie seems stuck in his recovery. He reported to spring training with a knee brace back in February, and he still has it this time around.

As a result, he may not be able to participate in full baseball activities at Mets camp. The likelihood is that he won’t appear in games until he sheds his brace. Brodie Van Wagenen recently narrowed down Lowrie’s physical issues to his left knee, and said he must find a way to feel comfortable playing while wearing a lighter brace.

For now, Lowrie played catch and took some ground balls, but not much else.

“Once again, we’re going to see how his progression is,” Rojas said. “That’s something that I need to reassess with the performance staff as well to see where he is. The knee brace was his limitation as far as getting comfortable … throughout practice and seeing if he can wear it in games. That was the question as we were going through camp, and we need to reassess with the performance staff here in camp as far as his baseball activity.”

New York Mets: Prospects Who Can Make an Impact

New York Mets, Andres Gimenez

Over the last few hours, the New York Mets added multiple veterans to their 60-man player pool for Spring Training 2.0. Throughout the field of players, the Mets have a small number of prospects who have a chance to make the major league roster. As the roster spots dwindle, it seems unlikely the Mets will use players within their organization to fill those spots.

Andres Gimenez is the first prospect that pops out of the Mets player pool. With the current set up of the Mets infield, he is a backup player. What he does bring is speed and an above-average glove, which is valuable for a weak defensive team. Gimenez also played exceptionally well in the Arizona Fall League, and he should make the 30-man roster. He will like to get cut when it drops to 28, but he seems to be a more reliable option than Eduardo Nunez or Jed Lowrie.

Extra Rotation Options

David Peterson is an intriguing option for the Mets because of their lack of starting pitching depth. As a left-handed pitcher, he could make the bullpen as a second left-handed reliever but projects better as a starter. If the Mets need rotation help for an extended period, it would be a better decision to turn to Peterson over Walker Lockett or Corey Oswalt. Lockett and Oswalt have career ERAs of 8.84 and 6.43, respectively. With the expectations that low, there no reason not to give Peterson the opportunity.

Kevin Smith and Franklyn Kilome are two other pitching prospects who could make an impact. While Kilome projects more as a reliever, Smith’s potential as another lefty is exciting. His 2.75 ERA through his minor league career is impressive and also serves as a better option than Oswalt and Lockett. Though only pitching less than 50 innings in double-A, he is a fringe candidate for the 30-man roster.

New York Mets: Looking at the Designated Hitter Candidates

New York Mets, Yeonis Cespedes

The designated hitter is here to stay during the 2020 shortened season, and the New York Mets are full of options. From injury-prone stars to bench players who do not have a role, the candidates are endless for the Mets.

Yoenis Cespedes

Yoenis Cespedes is the front runner to be the designated hitter. Reports say he will be fully healthy for Opening Day, and putting him at DH would preserve his legs for the entire season. Over 81 career games as a DH, he is hitting .287/.328/.524 with 18 home runs and 60 runs batted in. Cespedes has the highest potential to carry the team when healthy, and Mets fans would love to see him contribute every day. Despite the injuries, he still possesses a lethal arm in the outfield and is a former Gold Glove winner.

Dominic Smith

Dominic Smith also dealt with injuries during 2019. He lost playing time at first base due to Pete Alonso earning the job for himself. Smith only has one previous game as a DH and but is a potent left-handed hitter. He is coming off his best year in the big leagues, and he is a better option than Cespedes. Considering that Smith will be with the team in 2021, they should be getting him ready for the DH role going forward.

J.D. Davis

It seems J.D. Davis days at third base are limited and is mainly a left fielder. The most likely situation for Davis to end up at DH is if the Mets opt to put Cespedes in left to keep a strong lineup. They could also put Jake Marisnick in center field and put Brandon Nimmo and Michael Conforto in the corner positions. The main reason Davis could be a DH is due to his defense in the outfield.

Robinson Cano

A healthy Robinson Cano is someone the Mets would like to play all 60 games of the season. At 37-years old, it is unlikely for him to play all of them at second base. To keep him fresh/healthy moving Jeff McNeil to second and Davis to third base would allow the Mets to DH Cano and keep his bat in the lineup. He is still a solid defensive second baseman, so do not expect him to be the everyday DH.

Wilson Ramos

Much like Cano, Wilson Ramos is someone who needs to play in all 60 games. He will not be able to do that at catcher, but the Mets hope to keep their best hitter with runners in scoring position in the lineup. Instead of giving Ramos an entire day off from catching, moving him to DH and putting Tomas Nido/Rene Rivera behind the plate would balance the drop in production from the catching position. Despite the hitting loss, the catching defense would upgrade during Ramos’ turn at DH.

Jed Lowrie

Jed Lowrie has no fit on the roster and is only an option because he has nowhere to play in the field. The last time Lowrie played every day, he was an All-Star, but he has gone a year and a half since the last time he made a starting lineup. The most significant trait for Lowrie as a DH is his switch-hitting ability.

The Mets DH options are abundant, and it would be no surprise if they had the most players swap in at DH throughout the season. Everything is analytics driving in modern baseball, and combining that with keeping players fresh is going to be a major challenge for Luis Rojas in year one.

New York Mets: Is Jed Lowrie a complete bust?

New York Mets, Jed Lowrie

Before the 2019 season, the New York Mets signed then free agent Jed Lowrie to a two-year pact to start in the infield. He has the ability to play second and third, so he was a useful piece even though the team had traded for Robinson Cano and Todd Frazier was still around. He was actually coming off a 5.0 fWAR season with the Oakland A’s, so at least he had skills, right?

Now, however, the Mets’ decision to ink Lowrie to a deal has brought them virtually nothing and is quickly approaching, as the New York Post analyzed, bust status. And not because he doesn’t know how to play baseball and be an effective major leaguer, which he has proved he is. It is because persisting health issues have gotten in the way.

Lowrie has been a Brodie Van Wagenen client in the past. According to a talent evaluator interviewed by The Post, those are the guys he trusts: his clients.

“[Van Wagenen] knows the guys he represented and those are the guys he believed in,” a major league executive said. “His knowledge of players is based mostly on the players he represented, so you are partial to the players you know, and obviously he went to the players he knew.”

When all was said and done, Pete Alonso made it as a first baseman and established himself as a top performer, and Jeff McNeil also played lots of reps in the infield. It was Lowrie the one that couldn’t even make the field, going 0-for-7 in the year and missing almost the entire season with an assortment of ailments, including a knee issue that, to this day, refuses to fully go away.

The Mets’ infielder hasn’t been able to take the field

From the start of this year’s spring training and until action was halted, the New York Mets infielder couldn’t take the field because of his knee injury. He practiced with a large brace.

It is unclear what the Mets should expect from Lowrie this season. There isn’t a clear path to regular playing time and he isn’t 100 percent healthy.

Maybe the New York Mets would do things differently if they knew Alonso and McNeil would be this good. Perhaps they would have hired reinforcements to the bullpen. That ship has sailed now, however.

Last year, he suffered a pulled left hamstring, discomfort on his right side, and a damaged left knee capsule.

“That’s $20 million that was basically thrown out the window,” the talent evaluator said. “Stuff happens, I get it, but the reality is did they need Lowrie? No.”