Bill Baer

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Mets continue to avoid using 10-day disabled list

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Nearly two months ago, I wrote about the weird and inefficient way in which the Mets have handled injured players. The new collective bargaining agreement reduced the minimum stay on the disabled list from 15 to 10 days, which creates an incentive for teams and players to appropriately deal with injuries. With a 15-day minimum, teams and players would often hide or ignore minor injuries and the player would simply sit on the bench, eating up the utility of that roster spot.

Every team has seemed to take advantage of the new 10-day disabled list. That is, except the Mets. In my previous article, I listed a handful of examples. One was catcher Travis d'Arnaud, whose wrist was injured April 19 against the Phillies. He didn’t start in the next four games, but did appear as a pinch-hitter each game. He started on the 26th but could only make it through five innings. He left after six innings on May 2 against the Brewers. At the time of that writing — May 4 — d’Arnaud still hadn’t been put on the DL, but he finally went on May 5 and was activated on the 24th. Other examples included Yoenis Cespedes and Lucas Duda. Then there was the whole Noah Syndergaard situation in which he refused to undergo an MRI and the team said that was okay. He started a few days later and lasted 1 1/3 innings before exiting with a torn lat muscle.

Even broadcaster Ron Darling has criticized the Mets for their health woes. He blamed the trainers, as the Mets have had a revolving door in the infirmary.

That brings us to the latest issue. On Sunday against the Giants, Conforto was hit on the left wrist with a pitch. He has been held out of the lineup ever since. And, according to MLB.com’s Anthony DiComo, the Mets still haven’t discussed putting him on the 10-day disabled list. For some simple math, Conforto has been out four days and the minimum stay on the disabled list is 10 days. That’s at least 40 percent inefficient! If the Mets had played it safe with Conforto and put him on the disabled list immediately, they would not have had a dead roster spot for four days. The Mets could have called up a player from Triple-A to have an extra bat off the bench. That might have, for instance, had an impact during Tuesday’s 6-3 loss to the Marlins.

The only upside to not placing a player on the disabled list is having that player available within the 10 days the player would otherwise be missing. If the injury only requires a week of rest, for instance, then the Mets technically would gain three days of time with the player in question on the active roster. That comes at the cost of that player’s roster spot being dead for the other seven days, though. Is it worth it? The Mets seem to be the only team on that side of the argument.

Kris Bryant exits game with sprained right ankle

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The Cubs had a scare on Wednesday night when third baseman Kris Bryant left with an apparent ankle injury. In the bottom of the fifth inning, Nationals catcher Matt Wieters hit a pop up that veered just into foul territory near the third base bag. Bryant caught it but his momentum took him back into fair territory. In doing so, he stepped awkwardly on the third base bag and appeared to twist his ankle. Bryant needed the assistance of manager Joe Maddon and the team trainer to get off the field.

Bryant was diagnosed with a mild ankle sprain, CSN Chicago’s Patrick Mooney reports.

Bryant was 2-for-3 on the night before departing and being replaced by Jeimer Candelario. He’s now hitting .264/.395/.520 with 16 home runs and 32 RBI in 329 plate appearances. Needless to say, the 39-39 Cubs would see their playoff odds hurt immensely if Bryant were to miss a significant amount of time.

Miguel Sano will participate in the 2017 Home Run Derby

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Hector Gomez reports Twins third baseman Miguel Sano will participate in the 2017 Home Run Derby, to be held in two weeks at Marlins Park in Miami. So far, Marlins outfielder Giancarlo Stanton is the only other confirmed participant.

Sano, 24, is having an outstanding season, batting .274/.375/.548 with 18 home runs and 53 RBI in 293 plate appearances. According to MLB’s Statcast, only Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge (96.7 MPH) has a higher average exit velocity than Sano (96.4 MPH).

Brian Dozier was the last member of the Twins to participate in the Home Run Derby. In 2014 at Target Field, Dozier failed to make it into the second round after hitting only two home runs. Justin Morneau is the only Twin to have ever won the Home Run Derby, as he beat Josh Hamilton 5-3 in the finals of the 2008 Derby at Yankee Stadium — although Hamilton out-homered him in total 35 to 22.