We heard on Monday that David Wright wouldn’t make his Grapefruit League debut this week due to stiffness in the left side of his rib cage. The Mets continue to express confidence that the 29-year-old third baseman is making progress, but he won’t be playing in a game anytime soon.
According to Andy Martino of the New York Daily News, Mets manager Terry Collins said this afternoon that Wright won’t play until next weekend at the earliest and is scheduled to see a doctor Monday. His doctor visit was previously scheduled, so there’s no indication that he has suffered any sort of setback.
Wright has maintained that he would be in the lineup if this was the regular season, so he probably deserves the benefit of the doubt for now, but this obviously isn’t what he had in mind after being limited to just 102 games last season due to a stress fracture in his lower back.
The Mets signed catcher Jose Lobaton to a minor league contract, the team announced Friday. The deal includes an invitation to spring training, where it’s assumed Lobaton will be in the mix for a backup role behind Travis d'Arnaud and Kevin Plawecki.
Lobaton, 33, is coming off of a four-year stint with the Nationals. He put up his worst career numbers in 2017, producing -0.6 fWAR after slashing just .170/.248/.277 with four home runs in 158 plate appearances. While he’ll give the Mets little to work with at the plate, his near-decade of experience behind the dish should make him a decent emergency option, if nothing else.
In the meantime, the Mets are expected to roll with a d’Arnaud/Plawecki platoon to start the season. Both catchers saw slight upticks in value over the 2017 season: d’Arnaud turned in 0.8 fWAR after hitting a career-high 16 home runs, while Plawecki collected 0.6 fWAR and three homers after raising his batting line over the Mendoza Line for the first time since 2015.