A day after barely being able to walk back to the dugout after a groundout, Brandon Nimmo was right back in the Mets’ lineup against the Cardinals on Wednesday, batting first and playing centerfield.
Nimmo was pleasantly surprised that his bruised right quad improved as much as it did after he hit a hard foul ball squarely into his leg Tuesday night, leaving him temporarily hobbled. But upon testing it with his usual stretching/agility routine and a few swings in the batting cage, he got the OK from the team’s athletic training staff.
“The one thing that [director of player health Brian Chicklo] said last night was sometimes when you get hit directly on that muscle it kind of shuts down,” manager Buck Showalter said. “That’s why we saw such an awkward run.”
Nothing that ice, rest and a knee-stability sleeve — and the peace of mind provided by a clean X-ray — couldn’t fix, apparently.
“If you’re not sure how that feels, go home tonight, take a hammer and hit it off your quad. I think sometimes [people say], ‘Oh, rub something on it, just shake it off.’ It hurts,” Showalter said. “I always want to feel what my players are feeling, but not to that point.”
Diaz times two
Edwin Diaz and his younger sibling, the Reds’ Alexis Diaz, on Tuesday became just the third pair of brothers in major-league history to record a save on the same day.
“It was really emotional for my family,” Edwin Diaz said. “Both brothers pitching on the same level, it’s really, really fun. So I’m really happy.”
After pitching the ninth inning of the Mets’ 3-1 win against the Cardinals, Edwin knew he wouldn’t pitch in the second game of the doubleheader, which allowed him to keep a closer eye on Reds-Guardians. He saw that Alexis got into the game but didn’t realize it was a save situation until he saw how Alexis reacted — double fist pump and scream of excitement, just like Edwin — once the game ended.
“After he got the last out, I see him celebrate and said, ‘[Shoot], he got his first big-league save,’” Edwin said.
Alexis, a 25-year-old rookie who features a similar fastball/slider combo, was a surprise choice to make the Reds out of spring training. Edwin has been very proud watching from afar as Alexis has posted a 0.52 ERA in 16 relief appearances and said the whole family plans to attend the Mets-Reds series this year, July 4-6 in Cincinnati and Aug. 8-10 at Citi Field.
Righthander Jordan Yamamoto finally made his minor-league season debut Tuesday, allowing two runs in 1 2/3 innings of relief for High-A Brooklyn.
He had been conspicuously absent. After being removed from the Mets’ 40-man roster near the end of spring training, he spent the first month of the season on Triple-A Syracuse’s roster but never got into a game — apparently while working out at the Mets’ Port St. Lucie, Florida, complex.
“He’s not hurt,” pitching coach Jeremy Hefner said recently. “They were trying to do some mechanical changes with him . . . Instead of doing it in Syracuse, he’s doing all that in (Port St. Lucie). Trying to get some velo back, trying to work on some of the things that made him who he was. He hit 93 [mph] a couple of times the other day, so he’s trending in the right direction.”
Starling Marte (bereavement list) will return to the Mets on Thursday and be activated Thursday or Friday . . . Showalter said Eduardo Escobar (.686 OPS entering Wednesday) is first or second in the majors in ball/strike calls that have gone against him. “Do you feel like he’s been arguing a lot of balls and strikes?” Showalter said. “It’s been tough on him. He’s worn it. It makes you want to support him even more.” . . . The Mets already are mentally preparing for a Denver forecast on Friday/Saturday that calls for a chance of snow and temperatures plunging into the 30s. “How do you pack for this trip?” Showalter said. “I don’t have anything that heavy.”