Mets reinstate Parnell, Herrera from DL
NEW YORK - The Mets are finally getting some major pieces back, even if they are still not whole.
The club activated reliever Bobby Parnell and second baseman Dilson Herrera Thursday from the disabled list, while simultaneously losing another reliever and infielder for the short-term. To make room on the roster, starter-turned-reliever Dillon Gee was placed on the bereavement list following the death of his grandmother, while infielder Ruben Tejada was placed on the paternity list.
"It's not as though we have a full deck at this point," Mets GM Sandy Alderson said. "But I do see that we're starting to get people back, and that's a good thing. Of course, that doesn't solve our problems. Players have to perform and blend into what we already have. But at least we're starting to get the numbers down."
It's been a particularly long road back for Parnell, who underwent Tommy John surgery early last season after saving 22 games in 2013. In his absence, Jenrry Mejia and then Jeurys Familia assumed the closer's role while Parnell rehabbed. Once on a rehab assignment, Parnell struggled across two levels. He spent the maximum 30 days trying unsuccessfully to regain his former triple-digit velocity. He had a setback with a forearm strain and pitched to an 11.57 ERA in 15 appearances for Class A St. Lucie and Double-A Binghamton.
"I'm as close to 100 percent as I've been," Parnell said.
Mets manager Terry Collins has made no secret that Familia, whose 17 saves rank fifth in the National League, would retain his job as the closer.
"I'd rather keep him there," Parnell said. "I think he's figured that out right now. We'll let him keep it."
Collins said he expects to get Parnell into a game as soon as possible.
Herrera had been sidelined since May 15 with a broken middle finger on his throwing hand, which he hurt during pregame infield drills. He started at second base and batted seventh in Thursday's lineup. The 21-year old was hitting .235 in 34 at-bats at the time of his injury.
Wednesday, the Mets optioned infielder Danny Muno to Triple-A Las Vegas to make room for catcher Travis d'Arnaud, who returned from a broken finger. With Tejada away from the club, the Mets once again do not have a backup infielder on the active roster.
"That's the practicality of the situation," Alderson said. "It's just the reality of what we have. "
Both backup catcher Anthony Recker and left fielder Michael Cuddyer possess experience, to varying degrees, at third and first base. Cuddyer has also played second base in the past. Collins had been apprehensive about playing Cuddyer in the infield, but said Thursday that given the circumstances, he would if faced with a "worst-case scenario."
• The Mets were expecting an update on backup catcher Kevin Plawecki's viral symptoms after he underwent a series of tests Wednesday. But after those were inconclusive, Plawecki saw a doctor again Thursday. Asked about his status, Alderson said, "It's unclear at this point. He's seeing another doctor and we're just trying to get to the bottom of his condition."
• Second baseman Daniel Murphy is scheduled to get at-bats at extended spring training Friday, and his strained quad shouldn't require more than the minimum 15 days on the disabled list, Alderson said. Murphy has been out since June 5.