Michael Conforto had a barrage of tests Friday to find out why his bruised left hand isn’t healing well enough for him to swing a bat. Even if the MRI and CT scans come out clean, Conforto could be placed on the 10-day disabled list Saturday to make room for Zack Wheeler, who is returning from the DL to start against the Phillies.
Conforto’s DL stint, if it happens, can be backdated three days under baseball rules. That information was among a bunch of injury updates (and a few quips, one at Matt Harvey’s expense) provided by general manager Sandy Alderson.
Of the Mets’ many other injured players, Alderson indicated the closest to a big-league return are Jeurys Familia and Neil Walker. Familia, who had surgery to remove a blood clot near his throwing shoulder May 12, “is about ready to go to Florida and start a throwing program,” Alderson said. “I’m very optimistic about him.”
Walker, out since June 15 with a partial tear of his left hamstring, “thinks he’s going to get back right away,” Alderson said. “We’ve got to be a little bit careful . . . So I would hesitate to give a return date, although I think Walker will be back much sooner than either [Juan] Lagares or Harvey.”
* Alderson said David Wright is rehabbing under back specialist Robert Watkins in Los Angeles and is “three to five” weeks away from baseball activity.
“It’s going to be a while,” Alderson said. “I think there’s still a possibility he could return this season.”’
* Asked where Harvey is in his rehab, Alderson quipped: “You mean where he is other than Page Six?”
* Lucas Duda was scratched from the lineup because of the lingering effects of an illness. T.J. Rivera replaced him.
Alderson said he thinks the combo of Jose Reyes at short and Asdrubal Cabrera at second has stabilized the middle infield and lessened the need to call up the Mets’ top prospect, shortstop Amed Rosario.
“I do think that the situation that we have currently at the major-league level does affect Rosario,” Alderson said. “We’re playing well. If we’re playing well, there’s no real urgency to bring him up. If we’re playing poorly, I would hesitate to bring him up because he’d be viewed as some sort of potential savior. So that’s kind of a double-whammy at the moment. On the other hand, if we get another two months into the season or a month and a half into the season and things haven’t gone as well as we’ve hoped, maybe the future is now.”
Of Cabrera, who was very reluctant to move to second, Alderson said: “I actually think in Cabrera’s case that it’s a long-term benefit for him to be there and demonstrate that he can play it and can play it well.”
Alderson could be signaling that he views Cabrera as a potential second baseman next season with Rosario at short. The Mets hold an $8.5-million option on Cabrera for 2018.
Alderson said tampering rules prohibit him from discussing whether the Mets have interest in a reunion with Bartolo Colon, who was designated for assignment by the Braves and still is Atlanta property until he clears waivers.
The Braves gave away Colon bobbleheads on June 9. Alderson said: “I did joke that we had put in a call to buy their surplus inventory of Bartolo bobbleheads. We’d have to do a quick paint job on those potentially.”