The Mets placed Lucas Duda on the disabled list Saturday with an ailing back. The end result is that Michael Conforto avoids a trip to the minors.
Duda returned to the starting lineup last Tuesday after missing six straight starts with a lower back strain. He was three-for-12 with an RBI.
“It just kind of came back,” Duda said.
“He obviously never fully healed to have it reoccur that quickly,” assistant general manager John Ricco said, according to ESPN New York. “We gave it a chance last time [without the DL]. The four, five, six days didn’t knock it out. I think it’s obvious we need to give it more time. While he was cleared to play last time, obviously there was still something in there that it reoccurred. So we decided this time to give it the full 15 days.”
Lucas Duda’s place on the roster was taken by Dario Alvarez, who was slated to be promoted either way as the Mets planned to carry an extra reliever for a bit. Conforto would have been sent down, but now he’s safe. He is also safe from a demotion when David Wright is activated. Instead, Logan Verrett, controversially starting for Matt Harvey on Sunday, will likely be sent down after his cameo unless he throws a no-hitter or something.
Duda has been an enigma this season. He slumped through June, hitting .187 with just one home run. Then he had that smoking hot stretch in late July/early August when he nine home runs in eight games. He hasn’t homered since then. Overall, he is batting .247 with 21 home runs and 56 RBIs.
The Mets tried to sign Lucas Duda long-term before the season started. Does his performance this season warrant another attempted signing this off-season? It’s a tough question to answer. It might depend on how much he contributes if/when he comes back from the disabled list.