Jason Bay has four hits, homers twice in rehab game

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UPDATE: And wouldn’t you know it, now Mets manager Terry Collins tells Rubin that he will discuss bringing Bay back tomorrow as opposed to Thursday.

10:31 PM: Things are looking pretty bleak for the Mets at the moment, but at least they have some help on the way.

According to Adam Rubin of ESPN New York, Jason Bay went 4-for-4 with two homers, four RBI and a walk earlier this evening in his third minor league rehab game with High-A St. Lucie.

Bay has been sidelined since the end of spring training due to a strained left intercostal muscle near his rib cage. He’s scheduled to play one more rehab game tomorrow before being activated from the disabled list for Thursday’s series finale against the Astros. Though, really, doesn’t it sound like he’s good to go right now?

The Mets have tried to patch things together with Willie Harris, Scott Hairston and Lucas Duda in left field, so Bay could provide a huge boost offensively if he’s right. The 32-year-old outfielder batted .259 with six homers and a .749 OPS over 401 plate appearances before a concussion ended his first season in Queens.

RHP Fairbanks, Rays agree to 3-year, $12 million contract

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Dave Nelson/USA TODAY Sports
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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Reliever Pete Fairbanks and the Tampa Bay Rays avoided arbitration when they agreed Friday to a three-year, $12 million contract that could be worth up to $24.6 million over four seasons.

The deal includes salaries of $3,666,666 this year and $3,666,667 in each of the next two seasons. The Rays have a $7 million option for 2026 with a $1 million buyout.

His 2024 and 2025 salaries could increase by $300,000 each based on games finished in the previous season: $150,000 each for 35 and 40.

Tampa Bay’s option price could increase by up to $6 million, including $4 million for appearances: $1 million each for 60 and 70 in 2025; $500,000 for 125 from 2023-25 and $1 million each for 135, 150 and 165 from 2023-25. The option price could increase by $2 million for games finished in 2025: $500,000 each for 25, 30, 35 and 40.

Fairbanks also has a $500,000 award bonus for winning the Hoffman/Rivera reliever of the year award and $200,000 for finishing second or third.

The 29-year-old right-hander is 11-10 with a 2.98 ERA and 15 saves in 111 appearances, with all but two of the outings coming out of the bullpen since being acquired by the Rays from the Texas Rangers in July 2019.

Fairbanks was 0-0 with a 1.13 ERA in 24 appearances last year after beginning the season on the 60-day injured list with a right lat strain.

Fairbanks made his 2022 debut on July 17 and tied for the team lead with eight saves despite being sidelined more than three months. In addition, he is 0-0 with a 3.60 ERA in 12 career postseason appearances, all with Tampa Bay.

He had asked for a raise from $714,400 to $1.9 million when proposed arbitration salaries were exchanged Jan. 13, and the Rays had offered for $1.5 million.

Fairbanks’ agreement was announced two days after left-hander Jeffrey Springs agreed to a $31 million, four-year contract with Tampa Bay that could be worth $65.75 million over five seasons.

Tampa Bay remains scheduled for hearings with right-handers Jason Adam and Ryan Thompson, left-hander Colin Poche, third baseman Yandy Diaz and outfielder Harold Ramirez.