New York Mets Middle Infield Becoming Plagued By Injuries


Coming into spring training spirits were high in camp with the New York Mets. They had a strong roster and looked like they would finally be competing for a playoff spot. Those spirits were dampened when it was announced that both Josh Edgin and Zack Wheeler were set to have Tommy John surgery. Things have continued to get bleaker in Mets camp, as they could be without their projected double-play combination to start the season.

The injury bug first hit Daniel Murphy. While he avoided any problems when he was struck on the hand by a David Price pitch, he was forced to leave last Thursday’s game with a leg issue. It turns out the leg issue was in his hamstring, and Murphy was given at least a week timetable before returning. Sandy Alderson had said originally that Murphy could be out a little longer than a week, and that the team was bracing for the worst.

Signs have been encouraging recently for Murphy though, and the Mets are more confident that he will be ready for opening day than reliever Vic Black. That is not saying much though, as Black is dealing with a shoulder issue, something the Mets will undoubtedly be cautious with as a shoulder injury to a pitcher with the losses they have already suffered to their pitching staff.

So if Murphy does in fact miss time to start the season, how could the Mets replace him? According to the New York Daily News, Ruben Tejada will get the nod at second base. Terry Collins gave some insight to that possibility, saying, “It’s certainly a possible scenario. He played very, very well there a couple of years ago. I don’t know why he shouldn’t be one of the lead candidates. But we’ve got a long way to go before we worry about that.”

That quote was given by Collins on Saturday; did he know something that the rest of us didn’t? Because the following day shortstop Wilmer Flores fouled a ball off of his foot. He was in a ton of pain after it happened, as the Mets sent him for X-rays. The X-rays came back negative, by Flores was still put into a boot.

With Flores potentially sidelined now, the Mets could be forced to use Tejada at shortstop. For second base, they have two potential candidates in youngsters Matt Reynolds or Danny Nuno. Both players are having strong springs, and whichever one loses the second base battle will then compete with Tejada for at-bats at shortstop.

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Thankfully for the Mets, the shortstop replacements may not be needed. Flores was able to shed his boot Tuesday, and even got back to doing some light workouts. He is still unable to do any running, but he was expected to be stretching, hitting and throwing with his teammates. While he still has work to do, not having to wear the boot and getting back on the field is a good sign.

While Murphy and Flores seem to have avoided any major injuries, the fact still remains that they could miss some into the regular season. If that happens the Mets are better off rolling with the younger players in Reynolds and Zuno in some capacity, as the Tejada experiment has been used too many times without enough positive results.

Next: What will the Mets' record be in 2015?

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