Yesterday, we saw two rehab assignments for injured Mets at very different stages. Jason Bay played in his fourth rehab game since suffering his second concussion in two years on June 15th, nearing his return to the New York lineup, wheras Mike Baxter saw game action for the first time since he displaced his collarbone on June 1st.
At Pawtucket on Sunday, Bay went 2-for-4 with two singles, a walk, a stolen base, and a run scored for the Buffalo Bisons in his fourth rehab game, second in Triple-A. Bay also played left field for the entire game for the first time in four contests. After going hitless in
two rehab games with the Class-A St. Lucie Mets, Bay has hit three singles in his last two games, putting together better at-bats more consisently. It looks as though Bay will be activated off the 7-day concussion-specific disabled list on Tuesday in D.C. as the Mets take on the first place Washington Nationals. Like his last return to the Mets roster in the beginning of June, Terry Collins has said that Bay will be New York’s starting left fielder and will hopefully see him get off to a quicker start than the 0-for-17 skid he suffered after returning from a fractured rib. There hasn’t been any public discussions as to who will be demoted to make room for Bay, but it wouldn’t be surprising is Omar Quintanilla was optioned back to the minors, who’s only had four at-bats since June 26th.
Meanwhile, Mike Baxter was busy enjoying his first game action since saving Johan Santana‘s no-hitter with Class-A St. Lucie. He went 2-for-4 with a double and two RBI as he served as the DH throughout the entire game down in Florida. This is an encouraging sign for Baxter, who hasn’t seen live pitching in game situations in over a month and a half. Due to this long time on the disabled list, Terry Collins is estimating that his best pinch hitter will need between 25 and 30 at-bats in the minors before feeling ready to step back into the batter’s box in a Major League game.
As for Frank Francisco, he still hasn’t thrown since he felt pain in his injured oblique last week during a bullpen session, and there is still no timetable for his return to action.