Erick Aybar is out of the lineup and headed for an MRI exam

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Erick Aybar is absent from the Angels’ lineup this afternoon for the third straight game and Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register reports that the shortstop will undergo an MRI exam on his injured oblique muscle.

Aybar originally suffered the injury Saturday while sliding. Maicer Izturis replaced him at shortstop Sunday and Tuesday, but Brandon Wood is getting a rare start in his place today against the Rays.

Wood didn’t make an appearance in any of the first five games, but did start 20 times at shortstop last season.

Jose Reyes is hitless in 20 plate appearances to start the season

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Mets backup infielder Jose Reyes pinch-hit and popped up in the top of the eighth inning of Thursday night’s game in Atlanta against the Braves. That ran his streak up to 20 consecutive hitless plate appearances to start the 2018 season. He has reached base once, however, on a walk, so there’s that.

Reyes, 34, signed a one-year, $2 million contract with the Mets near the end of January. At the time, the Mets hadn’t yet signed Todd Frazier, so Reyes was in the mix to contribute as a utilityman but he has operated as a bat off the bench for the most part this season.

One wonders how much longer the Mets are going to let Reyes flounder. According to FanGraphs, he has already been worth a half-win less than a replacement-level player. Only eight other players have been as bad or worse this season.