Syndergaard throws, Matz gets clean MRI as Mets try to mend
NEW YORK (AP) Lengthy medical updates have become a part of Mets manager Terry Collins' daily routine.
Not exactly what New York needs during its final push for a return to the postseason, but that's the reality facing the reigning NL champions.
Collins was at least able to provide a bit of good news after his team's 10-8 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies on Saturday night.
Although he was unable to making his scheduled start Saturday because of strep throat, ace Noah Syndergaard threw a bullpen, and Collins said his All-Star pitcher would pitch instead Tuesday against Miami.
''It went great,'' Collins said. ''We're going to go with him on Tuesday. He did tell me that even during his workout, he felt just a little fatigued, so I thought one more day trying to get him some nourishment in him would help.''
The Mets used 16 pitchers during the first two games with the Phillies, including Friday after left-hander Steven Matz was scratched, and then had to exhaust the bullpen again Saturday when Sean Gilmartin allowed five runs before departing with two outs in the first inning.
The Mets are tied with San Francisco for the two NL wild-card spots. St. Louis is a half-game back.
While Syndergaard is returning on Tuesday, Collins wasn't as optimistic for Matz.
Doctors again examined Matz, and Collins said an MRI came back clean on the young left-hander's troubled shoulder. However, the manager made no mention of when, or if, Matz would throw again this season. If Matz does return, Collins wasn't sure if he'd be able to find a start for him over the season's final week.
''Right now, it might be, if he's able to pitch, we put him in the `pen and see if we can get him an inning here and an inning there,'' he said. ''But where we are, I'm not sure where we're going to get him in.''
Collins also said Wilmer Flores could miss the remainder of the regular season. He injured his wrist in a home-plate collision on Sept. 10 in Atlanta. He's received two cortisone injections but shown little improvement and has not taken batting practice.
''Not close to hitting,'' Collins said.
Flores said he visited a doctor Friday and was instructed to give his ailing wrist a little more time.
''I want to be healthy,'' Flores said. ''I'm the first guy that wants to be out there helping the team. It's just frustrating. I want to tough it out, but it's something that I don't want to hurt the team and hurt myself by doing that.''
While Flores remains out, shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera was in Saturday's lineup, one day after fouling a ball off his left knee. Collins said Friday night he might give Cabrera the next day off, but the infielder talked his way into the lineup.
''He just came in today and said `I'm in there,''' Collins said. ''We're on a mission and he knows he's playing good and knows he's swinging the bat great and knows he needs to be in there.''
The good news for Collins and the Mets is Cabrera is just dealing with a bruise, something unrelated to the strained patellar tendon he's battled in his left knee.
''This is a bruise, not like the other knee issue he has. When that one flares up, we're in trouble,'' Collins said.