8/17/2014 7:00 P.M. ET
Wright gets treatment on ailing shoulder
By Tim Healey / MLB.com
NEW YORK -- As the Mets showered, dressed and scurried out of the clubhouse, eager to enjoy a rare evening without work or travel, following a 2-1 loss to the Cubs on Sunday, their captain remained.
David Wright was busy receiving 45-60 minutes of treatment on his sore left shoulder, which has given him problems for two months and was re-aggravated when it absorbed the blow of an 88-mph fastball on Saturday night.
Wright, who was unavailable to the media before and after Sunday's game, didn't play in the loss. Manager Terry Collins made it sound as though Wright's availability on Monday -- at the very least -- was in doubt, as well.
The injury comes at an unfortunate time for Wright, whose recent 13-game hit streak helped him break out of a second-half slump. His slash line is still just .232/.289/.250 since the All-Star break -- which coincides with him receiving a cortisone shot in his ailing shoulder -- and he is weathering a down year overall. Wright's .711 OPS is far below his career mark of .874, and he's on pace for career lows in on-base percentage (.331) and slugging percentage (.380).
Collins downplayed the idea that this could be the beginning of a decline for the 31-year-old.
"David Wright will bounce back, whether it's next week or next year," Collins said. "This guy keeps himself in tip-top shape."
The manager did, however, acknowledge that the more recent struggles could be related to the shoulder issue.
"I do believe any time you compensate for an injury, you're going to change something so the pain is not there," Collins said. "The minute you change something, you can fall into a habit -- not necessarily a good habit. I know David, when he talked about it, tried to do some things at the plate to keep it from bothering him. It got to the point where he just had to finally speak up [in late June].
"Did he create some bad habits? Possibly. Has it been bothering him lately? I trust my players. When he says it hasn't been bothering him, it hasn't been bothering him. We'll see where it goes from here."
Dice-K to make another rehab start
NEW YORK -- Daisuke Matsuzaka's sharp rehab outing on Saturday, during which he needed just 69 pitches (43 strikes) to get through six innings with three strikeouts and no walks, was another promising step forward in his recovery from a sore right elbow that has kept him sidelined since late July.
The right-hander will pitch in another Minor League game this week, likely on Thursday for short-season Class A Brooklyn, according to manager Terry Collins. The Cyclones are home at MCU Park that day.
After that, though, Matsuzaka's future is uncertain.
"We're very happy with the way he threw," Collins said. "But right now, we aren't sure where the fit is going to be when he's ready to pitch here."
With Jacob deGrom nearing his return from the disabled list, there aren't any spots in the rotation -- despite the Mets giving Matsuzaka some length in his rehab games. There also isn't anyone in the bullpen who has merited a demotion.
Even right-hander Buddy Carlyle -- who signed a Minor League contract with the Mets in February and has usually been the odd-man out, having been designated for assignment twice already this season -- is going good. He is riding an 11 1/3-inning scoreless streak, the longest of any Mets reliever this season, and owns a 0.55 ERA and 0.74 WHIP.
Although most of his work has come in low-leverage situations, Carlyle has struck out 15 batters and walked three over 16 1/3 innings.
Collins has recently started trusting Carlyle in tighter games, including the ninth inning of Saturday's win and part of the eighth inning in a two-run contest against the Phillies on Monday. It was his first Major League hold since May 2009.
"Buddy has pitched very, very well," Collins said. "When it comes to the roster spaces and who's on or who's off, [general manger Sandy Alderson is] pretty heavily involved with that. When [Matsuzaka is] ready to go, we'll have to figure out where he fits. Right now, we haven't really had that discussion."
One possibility is the Mets leaving Matsuzaka on the DL until rosters expand on Sept. 1. If he does pitch on Thursday, one additional Minor League game would bring him to the end of the month.
• deGrom (rotator cuff tendinitis) threw a 20-pitch bullpen session on Sunday morning and had no issues. He is on pace to start sometime next weekend against the Dodgers in Los Angeles, though Collins noted he will likely be on a pitch count, given that he hasn't started since Aug. 7.
Tim Healey is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.