Mets place Ike Davis on DL, call up Fernando Martinez

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Ike Davis was hopeful that he could return to the lineup after missing just a few days with his calf injury, but the Mets have placed him on the disabled list … and are now calling it a left ankle sprain and bone bruise.

Calf, ankle. Same difference.

To replace Davis on the roster Fernando Martinez has been called up from Triple-A. Despite seemingly being around forever Martinez is still just 22 years old, but his prospect stock has gradually declined during the past couple seasons.

However, he was hitting .292 with three homers and an .838 OPS in 19 games at Triple-A prior to the call-up, which is very nice production for a 22-year-old in a league where the average player in 26. Martinez’s lack of strike-zone control and plate discipline remain stumbling blocks for his development, but he’s shown 20-homer power while hitting .275 between Double-A and Triple-A despite being very young for each stop.

He won’t be able to replace Davis’ production, as the first baseman was hitting .302 with seven homers and a .925 OPS in 36 games, but Martinez may finally be ready to contribute positively this time around while Daniel Murphy likely sees most of the action at first base and Willie Harris and Justin Turner split time at second base.

Noah Syndergaard: ‘I feel like I’m going to bet (on) myself in free agency’

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Yankees starter Luis Severino and Phillies starter Aaron Nola both signed contract extensions within the last week. Severino agreed to a four-year, $40 million contract with a 2023 club option. Nola inked a four-year, $45 million deal with a 2023 club option.

While the deals both represented significant raises and longer-term financial security for the right-handed duo, some feel like the players are selling themselves short. It has become a more common practice for players to agree to these types of deals in part due to how stagnant free agency has become. Get the money while you can.

Mets starter Noah Syndergaard is in a similar situation as Severino and Nola were. He and the Mets avoided arbitration last month, agreeing on a $6 million salary for the 2019 season. He has two more years of arbitration eligibility left. A contract extension with the Mets would presumably cover both of those years plus two or three years of what would be free agent years. As Tim Britton of The Athletic reports, however, Syndergaard plans to test free agency when the time comes.

Syndergaard said, “I trust my ability and the talent that I have. So I feel like I’m going to bet (on) myself in free agency and not do what they did. But if it’s fair for both sides and they approach me on it, then maybe we can talk.” He clarified that he would be open to a conversation about an extension, but the Mets thus far haven’t approached him about it. In his words, “There’s been no traction.”

Syndergaard, 26, has been one of baseball’s better starters since debuting in 2015. He owns a career 2.93 ERA with 573 strikeouts and 116 walks in 518 1/3 innings. Among pitchers to have logged at least 400 innings since 2015 and post a lower ERA are Clayton Kershaw (2.22), Jacob deGrom (2.66) and Max Scherzer (2.71). Syndergaard made only seven starts in 2017 yet still ranks seventh among pitchers in total strikeouts since 2015.

If Sydergaard doesn’t end up signing an extension, he will be entering free agency after the 2021 season. The collective bargaining agreement expires in December 2021 and a new one will likely be agreed upon around that time. Syndergaard will hopefully have better prospects entering free agency then than players do now.