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Michael Conforto heading back to New York after tweaking side while making catch

Mets outfielder Michael Conforto speaks to reporters at

Mets outfielder Michael Conforto speaks to reporters at spring training workout on Feb. 11 at Clover Park in Port St. Lucie, Fla. Credit: Newsday/Alejandra Villa Loarca

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. — Michael Conforto flew to New York on Monday to be evaluated by the Mets’ medical director, Dr. David Altchek, after injuring his side over the weekend, general manager Brodie Van Wagenen said.

After Conforto got an MRI in Florida, the Mets decided he needed to be checked further.

“Michael tweaked his side catching a fly ball in the wind during a game a couple of days ago,” Van Wagenen said. “We will provide updates when we have more information.”

Conforto most recently played Saturday, when he finished the top of the fifth by catching Yan Gomes’ fly ball. Several plays before that, Conforto tried to catch Emilio Bonifacio’s home run, hitting the wall as the ball eluded his outstretched glove.

If Conforto is sidelined for any part of the season — which begins March 26 — the Mets’ options include playing Jake Marisnick in center and moving Brandon Nimmo to right.

J.D. Davis is expected to get most of the playing time in left, with Dominic Smith also available. Jeff McNeil (the starting third baseman) and Yoenis Cespedes (recovering from heel surgeries and a broken ankle) are the only other outfielders on the 40-man roster.

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