NEW YORK -- Banner Day is debuting at Citi Field on Sunday, reinstating a tradition from 1963-96 that manager Terry Collins is completely on board with.
"We have to realize this game's all about the fans. That's why we play it. That's why we have these beautiful stadiums, to get these fans in," Collins said. "If Banner Day is something fans like and want to do, sign me up. Sign me up for anything that gets them to the ballpark. Sign me up for anything that creates that excitement that they want to come to the games."
Participants must check in with their game tickets at the Bullpen Plaza on 126th Street at 37th Avenue. The banners must be at least 22 inches by 28 inches and celebrate the Mets' 50th anniversary or a fan's favorite memory of the club.
Hall of Famers Dwight Gooden and Rusty Staub will serve as judges along with WFAN radio personalities Howie Rose and Evan Roberts before fans' texting, Twitter and Facebook votes help decide a winner from a group of three finalists. The winner will win a trip for two to a 2013 Spring Training game in Port St. Lucie, Fla.
Davis 'off and running' with renewed confidence
NEW YORK -- Manager Terry Collins played the matchup game with his lineup Saturday and sat Ike Davis against Padres lefty Clayton Richard, but a pinch-hit double for Davis has Collins believing the first baseman is finally on track.
Davis doubled to left field in the eighth inning of Saturday's 9-0 win, driving in a run for his fifth RBI in the past three games. He is 3-for-5 with a pair of pinch-hits in the three-game stretch since he was told he did not have to worry about a Minor League assignment after recording only 23 hits through his first 42 games.
"I credit [general manager Sandy Alderson] for sticking by his guns, and I think this kid just got his confidence back," Collins said after Saturday's game. "I think Ike Davis is right now off and running."
Davis downplayed it, repeating that it was only one at-bat, but he did concede he is more confident after starting his season in an unrelenting slump.
"I'm feeling better and getting a couple of hits, but it's one at-bat," Davis said. "We've got months ahead."
Collins said that, when it comes to Davis, he would consider the matchups, which dictated a start on the bench against Richard, who held left-handed batters to a .167 average entering Saturday's game. But Collins said before the game Davis will play the next two days against Padres righty Edinson Volquez and Phillies lefty Cole Hamels.
Cedeno OK after exiting with leg cramp
NEW YORK -- Manager Terry Collins said shortstop Ronny Cedeno was all right after leaving Saturday's 9-0 win against the Padres in the eighth inning with a right leg cramp.
Cedeno worked a walk after falling behind Padres reliever Dale Thayer, 1-2, and was pulled from the game as soon as he made his way to first base.
Kirk Nieuwenhuis pinch-ran for Cedeno and remained in the game in right field as Justin Turner moved from second base to shortstop, and Daniel Murphy entered the game to play second base.
Collins seeking opportunity to rest Wright
NEW YORK -- David Wright may accept a day off from manager Terry Collins, but the Mets third baseman will never ask for one.
With the Mets set to finish a stretch of 20 games in 20 days Wednesday, Collins said he will check with Wright following Saturday's game about the possibility of an off-day Sunday. The Phillies visit Flushing on Monday afternoon, and left-handers Cole Hamels and Cliff Lee will start two of the three games in that series.
"Absolutely not," Collins said when asked if Wright would ask for a day off. "It's hard not to play him at home -- it really is. But if he thinks he needs a blow, we have to figure out if tomorrow is the day he's going to need it, because against those lefties, he's going to play."
The flu sidelined Wright on May 19 in Toronto, and he missed three games in April with a broken pinkie. Collins says the digit is "getting closer" to being fully healed. Last season, a back injury helped limit Wright to 102 games.
"He's one of those guys that is honest with you," Collins said. "You go to him and say, 'Look, I'm giving you Thursday off,' he's yet to say, 'No, no I'm fine, I'm going to play.' He'll say, 'Who's pitching?' And it's part of the discussion he has. He wants to be in there."
In some ways, Wright reminds Collins of Jeff Bagwell, who played for the Astros during Collins' years as manager in Houston.
"I remember when Bagwell broke his hand one year and missed some time," Collins said. "The next year I was going to give him a day off, he said, 'I missed six weeks last summer, I'm playing.' And that's the way David Wright is. He was hurt enough last summer, and he wants to play."
Busy Mets looking to give Santana a breather
NEW YORK -- Earlier in the season, Mets manager Terry Collins found an extra day between Johan Santana's starts to give his oft-injured left-hander some extra rest. As of late, New York's schedule hasn't afforded Collins that luxury.
The Mets finish a stretch of 20 games without an off-day on Wednesday, and before Santana's start on Saturday, Collins said he'd like to get his star pitcher some rest in the foreseeable future.
"We are looking to get him extra days down the road," Collins said. "I talk to him every day about how he's feeling. He has managed this well. This is why he's made the statements, 'Hey when June gets here, it's going to be different.' This is the one phase, or part of the season, where he was going to say, 'I want to see how I'm going to come out of this myself with the four days' rest.'"
Collins has strictly watched Santana's pitch count in his last three starts, pulling his starter as he nears 100 pitches. Santana has also done his part to assure he's ready for his next start, cutting down on activity between starts so he's well rested. Collins is being overly careful with Santana, as the two-time Cy Young Award winner missed all of last season while he was recovering from shoulder surgery.
Santana is 2-2 with a 2.75 ERA in 10 starts this season after throwing a four-hit shutout Saturday. He hadn't received a decision in his prior three starts, dating back to the beginning of the Mets' 20-game streak on May 11.
The Mets promoted Jenrry Mejia to Triple-A Buffalo as the right-hander continues his recovery from Tommy John surgery. His next start will come Wednesday, though the team may add him to the big league club as a reliever when he is deemed fully healthy.
Collins said he did not have an update on the next step for Chris Young, who allowed three runs in 6 1/3 innings Friday for Class A Advanced Port St. Lucie. Young made four starts with the Mets last season before suffering a shoulder injury. He has only eight big league starts since the start of the 2010 season.
Thomas Boorstein is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @MLBoorstein. Ethan Asofsky and Steven Miller are associate reporters for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.