Out since early July with a strained oblique muscle, Twins first baseman Joe Mauer is set to come off the disabled list for tonight’s game against the Astros.
Mauer went 6-for-15 (.400) on a four-game minor-league rehab assignment at Single-A without experiencing any setbacks, and Rhett Bollinger of MLB.com reports that the former MVP is on his way to Houston to rejoin the team.
Mauer got off to a terrible start this season after sitting out the end of last year following a concussion and moving from catcher to first base, but he was hitting .320 in his last 20 games and had an active 12-game hitting streak at the time of the oblique injury.
The Mets told catcher Devin Mesoraco on Saturday that he will not make the team, Mike Puma of the New York Post reported. Mesoraco, a major league veteran of eight seasons, said he won’t accept a reassignment to Triple-A. According to Matt Ehalt of Yahoo Sports, the Mets will place Mesoraco on the restricted list rather than release him. As a result, Mesoraco is expected to retire from baseball.
This is a bad look for the Mets. Most teams release the major league-caliber players they don’t plan to break camp with so they can pursue opportunities elsewhere. The Mets must really be hurting for catching depth.
Mesoraco, 30, was decent as the Mets’ back-up last season after coming over from the Reds in the Matt Harvey deal, batting .222/.306/.409 with 10 home runs and 30 RBI in 229 plate appearances. Mesoraco is a bit below-average defensively and spent much of the mid-2010’s on the disabled list dealing with hip and shoulder injuries.
On Monday afternoon, the Mets signed free agent catcher René Rivera, per SNY’s Andy Martino. Rivera was recently released by the Giants. He is less potent with the bat than Mesoraco, but a bit better defensively. Rivera will back up Wilson Ramos and Travis d'Arnaud will likely open the season on the injured list. Tomás Nido will be the third-string catcher behind Rivera.