NEW YORK -- Jason Bay crashed into a wall Friday and was fine.
Until he wasn't.
The delayed effects of Bay's crash in Los Angeles have resulted in a mild concussion, keeping him out of Tuesday's game against the Cardinals. The Mets will reevaluate Bay within two to three days to determine whether or not he will require a stay on the disabled list.
"It's hard to tell," Bay said when asked specifically about the possibility of a DL stint. "I'm kind of getting a 48-hour grace period."
In the second inning Friday, Bay made a spectacular catch of Jamie Carroll's fly ball while crashing into the outfield wall at Dodger Stadium. Feeling no ill effects from the collision, he remained in the game, later hitting a three-run double. Bay then played all nine innings Saturday and Sunday and felt no discomfort, before complaining of headaches during Sunday evening's flight back to New York.
Doctors examined Bay Tuesday morning and determined that he had what Mets manager Jerry Manuel called "a mild, mild concussion."
"I didn't really have a headache until we got on the flight on the way home," Bay said. "Over the last couple days, it's just some dull headaches. Given everything that happened, we'll try to be cautious."
Angel Pagan shifted to left field Tuesday in Bay's absence, with Jeff Francoeur starting in right.
The Mets have erred on the side of caution with head injuries since Ryan Church missed most of the 2008 season with a poorly managed concussion. Most notably, the Mets forced David Wright to the disabled list last summer after Giants pitcher Matt Cain hit him in the head with a fastball.
Bay understands that precedent, and he is willing to be cautious as well.
"This is kind of uncharted for me," he said. "I'm kind of learning what's going on."
Manuel defends Mets coaching staff
NEW YORK -- Mets manager Jerry Manuel was adamant Tuesday that he -- and not his coaches -- should receive all the blame for his team's recent 2-9 West Coast road trip.
"They have done a tremendous job -- all of them," Manuel said of his coaches. "When you go through these things, you have to look here. You have to look at the manager. I don't think it's fair to put other people out there. I think you've got to look at the manager. That's part of the job. That's part of being in New York."
Following Sunday's loss in Los Angeles, general manager Omar Minaya would not comment on the job status of Manuel's coaches -- particularly that of hitting coach Howard Johnson. But after discussing the matter with his staff on Monday, Minaya opted against making an immediate change.
"Our guys work tremendously hard," Manuel said. "We all have different responsibilities. But wins and losses, those are my responsibilities."
Mets to skip Takahashi's turn in rotation
NEW YORK -- Despite Hisanori Takahashi's strong start in Los Angeles, the Mets will skip the left-hander's next outing this week at Citi Field in an effort to keep Johan Santana on turn.
Santana will now pitch Wednesday on regular rest against the Cardinals in what would have been Takahashi's spot, followed by R.A. Dickey and Mike Pelfrey. Takahashi will be available in the bullpen throughout this week, before making his next start Saturday against the D-backs.
"It gives us a chance to have our best pitchers [on the mound]," Mets manager Jerry Manuel said, "or what we think are our pitchers that match up well against the opposition."
With his rotation spot in jeopardy last Thursday in Los Angeles, Takahashi pitched his best game in over a month, holding the Dodgers to two runs over seven innings.
Francoeur decision looms as Deadline nears
NEW YORK -- Perhaps no name on the Mets' roster has been involved in more trade rumors than right fielder Jeff Francoeur.
The Mets acquired Francoeur from Atlanta for Ryan Church in the middle of last season, but the recent emergence of Angel Pagan as an everyday outfielder has suddenly made Francoeur, who was hitting .248 with a .679 OPS entering Tuesday's action, expendable, especially for starting pitching help.
If it were up to him, Mets manager Jerry Manuel may not be so quick to trade the six-year veteran, though, on the heels of outfielder Jason Bay suffering a concussion. Francoeur started for Bay on Tuesday and hit a three-run homer in the fourth inning off Cards ace Adam Wainwright.
"You like to have good players, and Jeff is definitely a good player," Manuel said. "Hopefully Jason's OK. Hopefully we have no issues and he can resume baseball activities."
Manuel has used Francoeur primarily against left-handed pitchers since Carlos Beltran returned for the second half.
Mets doctors examined right-hander R.A. Dickey for the second time in two days Tuesday and cleared him to make his next start. Dickey left Sunday's game after feeling discomfort in his left hip. ... Rod Barajas, who was placed on the disabled list Monday with a strained right oblique, expects to come off the DL when eligible. "The doctor says it looks exactly like what Jose Reyes had," Barajas said, referring to the oblique injury that kept Reyes sidelined for two weeks last month. ... The Mets announced Tuesday that they have come to terms with outfielder Matt den Dekker, their fifth-round selection in the 2010 First-Year Player Draft.
Anthony DiComo is a reporter and Kyle Maistri is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.