MIAMI — Yoenis Cespedes’ everlasting rehabilitation from twin heel surgeries took a detour this week from Port St. Lucie to Marlins Park, where he is spending time with the Mets — the medical/athletic training staff and teammates, in whatever order — while they are in town.
And he isn’t the only one. Travis d’Arnaud, on the injured list as he approaches the one-year anniversary of his Tommy John surgery, caught nine innings in an extended spring training game again Monday. He will catch another four or five innings Tuesday and check in with the major-league staff later that day, an opportunity for player and team to evaluate his progress and how close he is to returning.
Todd Frazier (strained left oblique) played five innings and went 2-for-5 in the Mets’ scrimmage at their First Data Field facility. He, too, is expected to be in Miami at some point in this series, though his activation from the injured list is not imminent.
For Cespedes, who did not speak to reporters and has not commented publicly on his rehab progress since Feb. 15, success continues to come in small steps, as expected. He played catch while the Mets took batting practice and took a few swings in the indoor batting cage Monday but is not running yet.
The highlight of Cespedes’ pregame activity seemed to be the conversations — with his teammates while they stretched, with former Met and current Marlin Curtis Granderson during batting practice, with general manager Brodie Van Wagenen before heading back into the clubhouse.
It’ll be much of the same for d’Arnaud and Frazier the next two days.
“We wanted those guys to come in,” manager Mickey Callaway said. “They wanted to say hi to everybody, get to see them in person.”
Callaway’s lineup Monday was a little funky at first glance. He said he wanted J.D. Davis batting cleanup because of his good at-bats during the weekend and Jeff McNeil seventh because Miami had a lefthander (Caleb Smith) starting . . . The Mets are not eager to bat Amed Rosario ninth, behind the pitcher, which they did 44 times in 2018. But “we won’t be hesitant to do it if it makes sense to help us score more runs,” Callaway said.