ATLANTA — It took just one pitch — the first one he saw in his first at-bat Sunday — for Mets prospect Brandon Nimmo to rid himself of the butterflies in his first major-league game.
“It was a very surreal feeling,” Nimmo said after the Mets’ 5-2 loss to the Braves. “I had fun, but I wish it would have ended up differently. I could have come through a couple of times.”
Nimmo started in rightfield, went 0-for-4 and became only the 16th Wyoming native to appear in a big-league game. The feat was witnessed by his parents, his sister and his fiancee. “That’s something pretty special to share with your family,” said Nimmo, the Mets’ first-round draft pick in 2011.
Nimmo stranded three runners, but manager Terry Collins saw encouraging signs from him. He could see action when the Mets meet the NL East-leading Nationals for three games in Washington beginning Monday night.
“I’m sure the first-game jitters were huge for him,” Collins said. “But we’ve got to get him calmed down because he’s going to [be in a bigger series] in 24 hours.”
De Aza safe?
Alejandro De Aza appears safe for now. The Mets have yet to give any consideration to parting ways with the struggling outfielder, according to multiple sources. De Aza, 32, is hitting .169 in sporadic action during a season that has been marked mostly by disappointment from the time of his signing.
He agreed on a one-year, $5.75-million deal in the offseason, when it appeared he had a role as part of a platoon in centerfield. But the unexpected return of Yoenis Cespedes shoved De Aza down the depth chart as the team’s fifth outfielder.
For now, De Aza’s status could be tied to that of Juan Lagares (sprained left thumb), who remains on the disabled list but recently began baseball activities. It’s still unclear whether he’ll require surgery.
Collins expects Noah Syndergaard to take the mound in Monday night’s series opener with no lingering elbow issues. “A trip to the doctor always gives those guys a sigh of relief,” Collins said . . . Zack Wheeler is expected to play long toss Monday, his first throwing since his rehab from Tommy John surgery was shut down by a nerve issue in his elbow.
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