Jose Reyes was pulled from the lineup less than two hours before game time. Ruben Tejada instead will start at shortstop.
New York Mets
There was no issue, the Mets indicated. Terry Collins merely wanted to ensure Tejada could return to the lineup by taking batting practice before committing to him starting at shortstop and giving Reyes a rest.
Tejada had been struck by a pitch on the knuckle of his left middle finger Thursday and had not played since leaving that game.
Reyes had started every game since returning from the disabled list for the second game of a doubleheader last Monday. Collins wants to strategically rest Reyes down the stretch to guard against him reinjuring his left hamstring or another muscle.
The manager indicated that David Wright, who has started every game since returning from the disabled list for a lower back stress fracture on July 22, is due to get a game off in Florida this week as well.
Like Tejada, Josh Thole (left thumb/wrist) pronounced himself ready to return to the lineup. He is available to pinch hit on Sunday and may start Monday in Miami against the Marlins.
SUNDAY WISDOM: Justin Turner had some advice for Josh Satin on Sunday morning, with Satin poised to make his major league debut against crafty Washington Nationals veteran Livan Hernandez.
“You ever played wiffle ball?” Turner asked Satin, alluding to Hernandez’s pitching repertoire.
Satin hit a combined .323 with 12 homers and 76 RBIs in 483 at-bats between Double-A Binghamton and Triple-A Buffalo. He is a patient hitter with an unconventional swing who had a .411 on-base percentage between the levels.
Satin started at three infield positions with Buffalo, but Collins has said he would only use the rookie at first or third base in the majors. Collins actually said he would like Satin to get acclimated to the outfield, a position Satin has never played in a game at any level.
The outfield exposure makes sense because Satin projects as a utility player in the majors, and being able to play corner outfield spots in addition to first and third base would increase his versatility. Satin said he already had been instructed by minor league field coordinator Dickie Scott to begin outfield work. He regularly shagged fly balls in the outfield during batting practice throughout the minor league season, at both Binghamton and Buffalo.
Satin may go to winter ball in Venezuela if a team will let him work in the outfield, whether that is Tim Teufel’s Caracas squad or Aragua, the team with which Triple-A catcher Raul Chavez long has been affiliated.
Meanwhile, it now sounds like Lucas Duda will not go to winter ball to get further acclimated to the outfield. Duda said he would adhere to whatever the organization prefers. Collins said Duda can get enough work in right field between now and spring training to be ready for next year’s Opening Day there if that’s where the Mets place him.
“He’s going to need a break,” Collins said, referring to Duda taking the winter off from games.
New York Mets
HELLO STRANGERS: Ike Davis and Johan Santana are due to visit the Mets in Miami. Santana should throw a bullpen session at the Marlins’ ballpark Tuesday for team staff.
Davis will continue limited baseball activities as optimism grows he will avoid surgery. Davis was due to take grounders, swing off a tee and with soft tosses, and play catch in Port St. Lucie on Sunday for a third straight day.
Collins said there is no intention to have Davis appear in a major league game this season, but the manager said about surgery: “I think maybe we can escape it, which would be great.”
Collins described Davis as understandably having “extreme frustration.”
Said Collins: “You’re talking about a guy who walked off the field in Colorado and said, ‘I’ll be ready for tomorrow.’ Four months later he hasn’t shown up yet. So he is real frustrated with the whole process. Medical people have said, ‘Look, this is a process. It’s going to take some time.’ Of course, Ike was ready to have surgery two weeks into it. He said, ‘OK, let’s get this fixed so I can move on.’ And they said, ‘That’s not maybe the best option.’”