Brandon Nimmo isn’t expected back with the Mets as soon as a few of his injured teammates are, but before Thursday’s game against the Cubs, he tested his injured index finger during batting practice for the second consecutive day.
The outfielder had to abort a minor league rehab assignment in mid-May due to recurring discomfort in his finger, but he’s hoping to begin another rehab assignment soon to see some game action.
“We’re in the final stages trying to check the last boxes, which are against the [pitching] machine and against high contact. It’s not even so much the swing, as we want to test the contact,” Nimmo said after BP “The machine helps to add a little more weight to the ball, rather than BP, which is a little lighter.
“Obviously, as soon as we’re able to do the machine and me getting jammed a few times with no sharp pain, which we haven’t tested yet, then [a rehab assignment] will probably be as soon as that happens.”
Nimmo, who has been sidelined since May 2, is not surprised that the first-place Mets have withstood so many injuries over the first 10 weeks of the regular season.
“I’m very proud of the guys, no doubt,” he said. “At any point, you could hang your head and feel sorry for yourself, like ‘oh, man, too many things are going wrong, we’re not supposed to win this year, whatever.’
“And the guys have never been like that. … Guys that have stepped in have really taken advantage of the opportunity. I think it’s a character show for the team and very good for us in the long run.”
Luis Rojas said Jeff McNeil (hamstring) is expected to join the Mets “either Sunday or Monday” and Albert Almora Jr. (shoulder) could come back this weekend in Washington. Both played again Thursday on minor league rehab assignments for Triple-A Syracuse. McNeil went 1-for-4 and Almora went 2-for-5.
Rojas also said that Michael Conforto (hamstring) remains behind those two teammates, but “looked really good” in his first game for Syracuse on Wednesday. Conforto went hitless in four trips Thursday night.
“I saw his videos [from Wednesday] and he looked like Michael on Day One,” Rojas said before the game. “He was attacking pitches and this is a progression we want to see.”
Nimmo, Rojas, Dom Smith, Francisco Lindor, and others chatted with 82-year-old former Negro League player Pedro Sierra during batting practice. Sierra was escorted by Mets director of diversity, equity & inclusion Donovan Mitchell Sr., the father of Utah Jazz star Donovan Mitchell.