Jeff McNeil is set to begin a rehab assignment in the coming days, but Mets manager Luis Rojas told Carton & Roberts that he doesn’t want to set a timeline for his return just yet.
“He’s starting his rehab this weekend,” Rojas said. “About when he joins the team, let’s just leave that and see how things go. I just don’t want to set a date here and disappoint or something. I want to respect the time he takes the in triple-a and progresses from the five inning deal to the seven inning deal in things like that. But he’s going to be in Syracuse this weekend, and he’s going to start.”
With some Mets fill-ins giving the team surprising contributions, it will be interesting to see how McNeil is deployed when he does come back from the hamstring strain he suffered on May 17.
“He could play left, he could be at second. I want all these guys to stay sharp at the different positions they play. We have Jose Peraza who has played an elite second base for us from a defensive standpoint, and there’s different things we can do in a game, especially in a National League game with the moving parts…The only thing is when we play National League games, you want Pete [Alonso] and Dom [Smith] in the lineup…If we’re facing a good righty and those guys are gonna be there, [Billy] McKinney is playing right, Dom is playing left and Mac is probably playing left. Those are the lefty bats you want to keep there.”
Of course, the Mets just want to have McNeil back before deciding where he is going to play, especially after the numerous setbacks that other players have ran into, including J.D. Davis, who Rojas said is getting his injured finger out of a splint and will continue to receive treatment, but there is no timetable for his return after a potential rehab assignment for last week was called off.
Brandon Nimmo, also dealing with a finger issue, is taking dry swings and will increase that to tee work soon, while Michael Conforto is still “a couple of weeks” away from starting a rehab assignment, per Rojas.