Mets place Josh Thole on 7-day concussion disabled list

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As expected, the Mets placed catcher Josh Thole on MLB’s new 7-day disabled list Tuesday evening following his collision at home plate Monday with the Phillies’ Ty Wigginton. Thole must either return in seven days or be disabled for an additional week.

Veteran Rob Johnson was promoted from Triple-A Buffalo in a corresponding roster move to provide depth behind fill-in backstop Michael Nickeas.

Thole is batting .284/.356/.370 with one home run, four doubles, six runs scored and seven RBI through his first 92 plate appearances this season. The Mets aren’t sure yet how severe the 25-year-old’s concussion might be, but it certainly looked bad.

Mike Napoli and Rays have “mutual interest” in a deal

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Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times unloaded a lot of interesting news items about the Rays last night, including a report that the Rays might have “mutual interest” in a deal with free agent first baseman/DH Mike Napoli. The Rangers declined Napoli’s $11 million option earlier this month and owe the veteran infielder a $2.5 million buyout.

Napoli, 36, had a strange year in Texas. He turned in 29 home runs, good for 11th-most among AL hitters, but finished the year batting just .193/.285/.428 over 485 plate appearances. According to FanGraphs, his -0.5 fWAR was the worst mark of his career to date, but on the bright side, he should come cheap for a team looking to swap out their veterans come spring.

Of course, the specifics of the Rays’ offseason plan have yet to be divulged — or, by all accounts from Topkin, even decided on. The club could go the refurbishment route, changing out some of their higher-paid veterans for a mix of prospects and cheaper aging players; or they could opt for a full rebuild, which Topkin cautions against as it could have a negative effect on the financing of a new ballpark. Either way, the Rays figure to offload some of their bigger contracts this winter, and will need to decide if they want to retain Alex Colome, Chris Archer, Wilson Ramos, Evan Longoria and others before pursuing any other major free agents.