ATLANTA — Listed at 5-10 and 190 pounds, and with a career-high two home runs on his ledger this season, Luis Guillorme is not anybody’s idea of a normal cleanup hitter. But when he showed up at the ballpark Wednesday morning and saw his name in the No. 4 spot for the first time in his major-league life, he did what he always does: rolled with it.
Guillorme went 1-for-4 with a run-scoring double in the Mets’ 7-3 win over Atlanta. He won’t stick around in the middle of the order, probably, but for a day he helped get the job done.
“I didn’t think much of it,” Guillorme said. “But we’re missing a couple of guys.”
That is true, and it led to manager Buck Showalter getting unorthodox. The Mets were missing two of their three position-player All-Stars, Jeff McNeil and Starling Marte, so Guillorme made do.
This year he has started in every spot in the batting order except No. 2.
“Oh man, I wish I could tell you everything he says to me in the course of a day. He’s pretty entertaining,” Showalter said. “[The lineup is] kind of where we are with some of our guys that aren’t here. Just trying to be constructive for our players.”
Guillorme is batting .308 and with a .771 OPS, the best numbers over a prolonged stretch of his career. He played in his 64th game Wednesday, approaching the high of 69 he set last year.
“[The opportunity is] something that I’ve been waiting for. It’s just a chance to play and the fact that I’ve gotten it this year consistently,” Guillorme said. “It just proves how much the coaching staff believes in me. Especially Buck.”
Brandon Nimmo managed to play the rest of the game Wednesday after fouling a pitch off his right knee — hard — in the fourth. Showalter indicated he’d like to give him a day off Thursday.
“I know one thing: Nim ain’t going to do any dancing tonight,” Showalter said.
Showalter said he hoped to have McNeil (paternity list) and Marte (left groin injury) back on Thursday. Neither was a guarantee, though.
The McNeils had their baby, according to Showalter, and all is well.
As the rotation turns
Highlighting the probable pitchers for the four-game Mets-Cubs series: Taijuan Walker against Marcus Stroman on Friday. They were good buds when teammates last year.
The other matchups are Carlos Carrasco against Keegan Thompson on Thursday, Max Scherzer against Drew Smyly on Saturday and David Peterson against Adrian Sampson on Sunday, the last game before the All-Star break.
The Dodgers claimed reliever Jake Reed off waivers from the Mets. He spent part of last year with them, too. The Mets designated Reed (11.37 ERA in five games) for assignment on Sunday . . . Shortstop prospect Ronny Mauricio missed more than a week because of a bruised hand but returned to Double-A Binghamton’s lineup on Wednesday . . . Showalter remained enthused about meeting LSU women’s basketball coach Kim Mulkey, the mother of Mets taxi-squad infielder Kramer Robertson, this week. The manager said, “I’d hate to miss a defensive assignment with her.”