Bay has done little more than ride a stationary bike and elliptical machine since fracturing a left rib late last month. His hope is to travel to Port St. Lucie, Fla., to begin the rehab process as soon as this weekend, with a possible return to the Mets by the end of May.”
Matt Ehalt of ESPN New York later tweeted that Bay had in fact been cleared to resume baseball activities and the 33-year-old “presumes he will leave for Florida after the homestand.” O.K., we all knew this time was coming…..Jason Bay will be returning to the Mets and his starting gig may very well be handed back to him because, well, ummm, I got nothing. Oh wait, I forgot, he’s a right-handed and his bat will help break up a lefty heavy line-up. I guess that’s something.
I’m not saying Bay shouldn’t get some playing time when he returns, but to give him the majority of starts in left while pushing Kirk Niuwenhuis all over the field as a 4th outfielder hardly seems like a decision based solely on merit. In fact, Bay’s .240 avg is below what others have been producing in his absence and I had really hoped that the veteran would be forced to earn his way back into the starting line-up.
Currently, however, it looks like manager Terry Collins is leaning towards handing the reigns back over to Bay and his big contract.
This situation will definitely get interesting as Bay’s return nears, especially if Kirk Nieuwenhuis and Andres Torres continue to play well. In one sense Collins decision should be easy, simply put your best team on the field. Unfortunately there’s always more to it then that and the business side of game may mean we get to see a little less of one of the team’s most exciting young players than we should as the calendar turns to June and Bay returns.
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