Jason Bay Heading To DL, Pagan May Bat 6th, Thole 2nd

According to Adam Rubin of ESPN New York, the New York Mets have officially placed left fielder Jason Bay on the disabled list with a strained left rib-cage muscle.

The DL stint, according to Rubin, could be backdated into spring training, meaning Bay would only need to miss the season’s first seven games. He would be eligible to return April 9.

“I took one swing and had a little bit of a sting or a stab in my side,” Bay said. “I’ve never had that before. I kind of hoped it was a cramp. With all the side problems that are running rampant in baseball, I kind of had a feeling something was up there. I took another round and it didn’t feel any better. That’s when we just shut it down.”

Bay received a cortisone injection Wednesday in Manhattan from Mets doctors.

Lucas Duda has been told he will make the team and will replace Bay on the Opening Day roster.

With the loss of Bay, however long it may be, Manager Terry Collins is reportedly “floating alternative lineups” to the media.

It looks like Angel Pagan may bat sixth in Bays absence, while the youngster Josh Thole bats second.

Speaking of Pagan, the manager said: “He brings some thump to the plate. I’m thinking about perhaps with Jason being gone maybe putting him in a spot where he can help drive some runs in.”

I happen to think that it’s a great idea and like some of you, I was already beginning to envision Thole as a number two type hitter anyway, so this will be a good test and challenge for him. It may even be something permanent if things work out well.