Nimmo back in action after passing heart tests

February 28th, 2020

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- Given a clean bill of heart health, returned to Mets camp Friday in high spirits, rejoining the starting lineup two days after the Mets scratched him to undergo cardiac screening.

“I guess I have a little bit larger heart,” Nimmo said, laughing. “Hey, I’ve got a lot of love to give.”

The reality, Nimmo said, was that the Mets scratched him due to an issue their cardiologist flagged on his Spring Training entry physical. Explaining it as an “irregular heartbeat,” Nimmo said he became aware of the issue during similar testing four years ago. The Mets told him at the time that it was a non-issue, but team doctors wanted to retest it this week to make sure the walls of his heart had not thickened.

As a result, the Mets told him about 25 minutes before game time Wednesday that he could not take the field. He underwent additional testing, wore a monitor for 24 hours, then performed a stress test on a treadmill Thursday night. Only after all that was finished did the Mets clear Nimmo to play.

In the interim, uncertainty regarding Nimmo’s status caused countless people to reach out to him offering concern and well wishes. At one point, his wife, Chelsea, reported on Twitter that Nimmo was healthy and in good spirits.

“She surprised me with that, but it seemed like everyone was pretty concerned,” Nimmo said. “Honestly, for the Mets and me, it was more of a precaution. Everyone was pretty concerned and sent out prayers. She just wanted to relay hey, it’s not that serious, and this was more of a precaution and I’m fine, and I’m going to be fine.”

In his return to the lineup, Nimmo finished 1-for-2 with a single and a run scored.

Powering up
Shortstop prospect provided the go-ahead hit in Friday’s 3-2 win over the Cardinals, homering off reliever Alex Reyes in the eighth inning. The Mets’ third-ranked prospect per MLB Pipeline, Giménez is slated to begin this season in the upper Minors. Although he is blocked at shortstop by Amed Rosario, Giménez is a plus defender who could eventually switch positions or be included in a trade.

Giménez said he has worked hard on packing muscle onto his 6-foot frame, adding a leg kick last season on the advice of one of his Minor League hitting coaches.

“He’s worked a lot on his approach,” Mets manager Luis Rojas said. “You can see a little more leverage on his swing, and also he’s put some more muscle on there. Good job by our Minor League coaches and development. They’ve done a good job with him.”

Midseason form
Making his second spring start on Friday, said his offseason routine appears to be paying dividends on the mound. Stroman allowed one run in two innings against the Cardinals.

“I started pretty much the second that we ended the season,” Stroman said of his winter work, which included an emphasis on core exercises. “I truly believe that I’ll be able to go out there and throw 210, 20, 30 innings, however many innings I’ll be able to go. That’s kind of the goal in the back of my head, because I feel like if I do that, then I’m keeping my team in the games and I’m also pitching deep. That’s always my goal -- is just to go out there and throw a ton of innings. Everything else seems to take care of itself.”

Stroman has not eclipsed 200 innings in a season since 2017. His career high is 204.

Up next
The Mets will take a lefty-heavy pitching staff on their bus to West Palm Beach for a 1:05 p.m. ET game Saturday against the Astros. will start the game, followed by prospects David Peterson and Stephen Gonsalves.