Mets center fielder Juan Lagares, who was placed on the disabled list with a pulled right hamstring on April 15, began a rehab assignment on Sunday afternoon with St. Lucie.
Lagares, who is eligible to return on April 30, went 1 for 4 in his first official game action since April 14.
Mets manager Terry Collins said Friday night that he was unsure whether or not Lagares would return on April 30, or if his activation would be shortly after.
Lagares had several at bats during extended spring training games prior to the start of his rehab assignment on Sunday.
After injuring his hamstring, Lagares said that while he had never suffered a hamstring injury before, that he expected to be at full strength within one to two weeks.
The fact that Lagares has returned to game action bodes well, and he should be ready to return in short order. It’s likely that Lagares will pass through Triple-A Las Vegas before he’s activated from the disabled list.
Since Lagares landed on the disabled list, Eric Young, Jr. – who was the beneficiary of regular playing time in his stead – has gone 9 for 42, lowering his average from .255 to .216.
When Lagares does return, it’s expected that he’ll be inserted back into the lineup as the every day center fielder.