The Mets welcomed Tomas Nido back into the fold — if not the active roster — as the catcher was cleared on Saturday to resume baseball activities after a bout with COVID-19.
Manager Luis Rojas said Nido, who has been on the injured list since Aug. 25, will report to the team’s alternate site in Brooklyn.
“We’re excited he’s back and right now the mission is to get him back in shape,” Rojas said. “He wasn’t on site for two weeks, so just to get him back into his baseball shape, do his thing and then see how that goes.”
Rojas wouldn’t discuss the specifics of Nido’s health after his positive COVID-19 test, but did say: “He was super excited. We got to see him [Friday]. Can’t wait for him to progress and get into good baseball shape again.”
Michael Conforto said the players also were thrilled to see Nido at Citi Field.
“It’s great to see him back,” Conforto said. “It was good to see him [Friday]. It’s good that he’s healthy. He’s feeling a lot better. I was in the cage when he came in there and he looks like he never left. He said he feels good.”
Nido, 26, is batting .292 with two home runs, six RBIs and a .929 OPS in seven games.
Conforto said the Mets are feeling the urgency of their position in the standings with 20 games to go after Saturday.
“We understand how short the season is,” he said. “We understand the situation. We know how important these games are against the Phillies and we’re fully aware of where we stand. We know we have to come and show up every day ready to turn this season around. There’s not many games left, so we really have to come to play and we’re aware of that. We’re going to come out every single day and leave it all out there. We’ve talked amongst ourselves quite a bit saying that we’re not ready to go home. We feel like we just started and we’re going to do everything we can to keep this thing going.”
Todd Frazier switched his uniform number from 33 to his more familiar 21. The number became available when Billy Hamilton was designated for assignment on Friday.
Frazier’s return to the Mets at the Aug. 31 trade deadline has allowed Rojas to start him at third base and use J.D. Davis as the designated hitter, which was the case on Saturday.
“I think Frazier — we all know he’s a better defender than J.D. can be,” Rojas said. “So having Frazier coming off a day off, he can help us there, just be fresh, play third for us.”
Pete Alonso was not in the lineup against righthander Spencer Howard . . . Rojas said lefthander David Peterson will start on Monday against the Phillies . . . RHP Hunter Strickland has cleared waivers and accepted his assignment to the alternate site . . . RHP Pedro Payano has been released.
Sign up for Newsday’s Mets Messages for updates directly to your phone via text, free with a Newsday digital subscription. Learn more at newsday.com/metstext.