Mets receive positive injury news from Jeff McNeil and Eduardo Escobar

Early injury feedback from the Mets has been overwhelmingly positive.

Eduardo Esocbar and Jeff McNeil had to let the Mets lose 2-1 in 10 innings to the Phillies in the top of Friday night. McNeil was back in the lineup on Saturday night, however, and there was hope that Escobar would avoid the injured list.

McNeil (right thumb laceration) swung a bat and took ground balls before the game, and said he felt fine. He suffered the injury when he was stepped on by Phillies first baseman Rhys Hoskins in the second inning. McNeil was eighth at bat, rare against right-handers, and playing second base.

“I woke up today feeling pretty good,” McNeil said. “Not as bad as we thought.”

When it happened, McNeil didn’t even realize he was hurt. Back in the dugout, he took off his batting gloves and there was blood everywhere. He needed two stitches.

“I was trying to avoid the tag, to shake things up,” said McNeil, who had a 13-game hitting streak after getting just one hit at bat.

Jeff McNeil
Robert Sabo for NY POST

As for Escobar, an MRI scan came back clean. He was hampered by tightness on the left side and left Game 1 of the series for a pinch hitter in the second inning. It is not known how long he will be out.

“‘Esco’ feels as good as you can expect today,” manager Buck Showalter said. “There was nothing there that should be long term, just a matter of how long we’re willing to wait. It’s like, ‘OK, maybe he’s in a little pain, what can he do, what can’t he do, can he run, can he play defense, can he hit left-handed, can he hit right-handed.’ We try to understand all this and make a good decision.

Eduardo Escobar
Eduardo Escobar
Getty Images

Minor league infielder Gosuke Katoh was at Citi Field on Saturday, in case the Mets need to place McNeil or Escobar on the IL. Showalter did not rule out using outfielder Mark Canha at third base if needed, before it was determined McNeil was healthy enough to play. The manager had four potential lineups on his desk two hours before the first pitch.

Canha played third on Friday night after injury, only his fourth game there in his eight-year big league career and his first since 2016.

He managed his only chance in the fifth, fielding a one-hopper off JT Realmuto’s bat and sending him off. The large crowd at Citi Field gave him a standing ovation.

“I never saw so many guys rushing for a glove last night,” Showalter said. “It was quite impressive.”

The Mets didn’t have that problem Saturday night. With McNeil able to start, Luis Guillorme moved to third base, where he started against right-handers in place of Escobar. This allowed the Mets to use their regular roster as they even considered the three-game series with Jacob deGrom on the mound.

New York Post

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