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Friday, May 23, 2014

Mets News and Notes: d'Arnaud Cleared, Mejia Clears Hurdle, Gee Rehab Start, The "Soup" will get playing time

Mets News and Notes:

D'Arnaud cleared
Travis d’Arnaud was cleared Thursday to begin baseball activities including running, throwing and hitting in a cage. The go-ahead came nine days after d’Arnaud suffered a concussion as the result of getting struck on the top of the head by Alfonso Soriano's backswing in the Bronx.

D’Arnaud still may be several days away from returning to the lineup. Terry Collins mentioned he would like d’Arnaud to get at-bats on a rehab assignment. Physicians will need to sign off before any game activity occurs.

D’Arnaud said he was symptom-free for the first time Wednesday. Previously, he was dealing with “a lot of headaches,” sensitivity to light and sound, and trouble sleeping.

D’Arnaud indicated he has now suffered three concussions during his professional career. One came on April 25, 2011, while he was playing in Double-A with the Toronto Blue Jays, when he was struck with consecutive foul balls and immediately became dizzy. He departed that game an inning later. The other came in 2008 on a play at the plate as a member of the Philadelphia Phillies, when he took a foot to the face after discarding his mask.

Mejia Clears Hurdle
Jenrry Mejia cleared a psychological hurdle Thursday while notching his second career save.

Mejia worked back-to-back days for the first time since June 5-6, 2010 while completing the Mets’ 5-3 win against the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Mejia has been leery about working on consecutive days because he feels the injury woes he suffered earlier in his career were linked to a bullpen-type workload rather than the consistency of starting.

Mejia is warming to closing, even though he staunchly has said he prefers starting.

Mejia’s light workload Wednesday -- eight pitches in a scoreless inning -- proved a perfect opportunity to get the emerging closer work for a second straight day.

Gee Rehab Start
Dillon Gee hopes to limit his absence to three turns in the rotation before returning from a strained lat muscle.

If that is to materialize, Gee will need to be in a rehab game no later than Sunday (if he's replacing Rafael Montero) or Monday (if he's placing Jacob deGrom). After all, those will be the third starts in the rotation for those rookies.

Gee threw again on flat ground at Citi Field on Thursday afternoon. The Mets plan to have Gee get on a mound for the first time since the injury on Friday.

It is unclear where Gee's rehab game would take place, but it is unlikely to be with Las Vegas because of the distance he would need to travel, a team official said.

Double-A Binghamton is home Sunday and Monday and may be the best bet. Class A St. Lucie is at Palm Beach on Sunday and off Monday.

The "Soup" will get playing time
Terry Collins got Eric Campbell’s bat into the lineup Thursday by having the rookie start in left field.

Now, the manager is serious about using Campbell as a true utility player by having him see some action at second base and even shortstop.

“I’m going to play this guy in the middle of the infield one of these days, too, because if he can play there, he’s got a chance to get a lot of at-bats,” Collins said after the Mets’ 5-3 win against the Los Angeles Dodgers. “Why not? If he’s athletic enough to play there, we’ve got to find out. He played there in Vegas. He played second a lot of games. He played short twice. I’m not going to put him out there in the ninth -- but run him out there in a game that maybe is a little lopsided."

Campbell is a natural third baseman, who also learned first base and the outfield in the minors. In his minor-league career, he has appeared in left field in 168 games and right field in 42 games. That is not that inferior to his career minor-league time at third base (194 games) and first base (227 games).

While Campbell learned outfield in the Mets system, he appeared there for “a few games” while at Boston College.
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