Prior to Thursday night’s series-opener in Colorado, the Mets announced that they have activated outfielder Juan Lagares from the 15-day disabled list. To make room for Lagares on the roster, outfielder Kirk Nieuwenhuis was optioned to Triple-A Las Vegas.
Apr 12, 2014; Anaheim, CA, USA; New York Mets center fielderJuan Lagares
(12) scores a run against the Los Angeles Angels in the 7th inning during the game at Angel Stadium of Anaheim. Mandatory Credit: Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports
Lagares, who landed on the disabled list with a pulled right hamstring on April 15, played rehab games for High-A St. Lucie and Triple-A Las Vegas prior to his activation.
Nieuwenhuis, who was mainly used as a pinch hitter after starting two consecutive games after being recalled, hit .222 with a .286 OBP in 18 at-bats for the Mets.
A few days ago, with Lagares’ return imminent, Collins said that the plan was now for all four outfielders (Lagares, Granderson, Chris Young, and Eric Young, Jr.) to rotate – with no player getting significantly less playing time than another.
Collins’ plan is foolhardy, and will probably fall by the wayside sooner rather than later. Still, the fact that the front office hasn’t stepped in to regulate the situation is puzzling.
Lagares needs to play, Granderson needs to play, and Chris Young needs to play.
Regardless of his speed, Eric Young, Jr. is a bench player – and his presence on the roster shouldn’t be taking time away from any of the three aforementioned players.