The Mets placed outfielder Michael Conforto and second baseman Jeff McNeil on the injured list on May 17, but both players are going to miss much more time than the 10-day minimum. Mets acting general manager Zack Scott said Monday that Conforto and McNeil have “significant hamstring strains” that will shelve them until late June, per Laura Albanese of Newsday.
Conforto has largely been an offensive standout with the Mets since he debuted in 2015, but this news continues a difficult platform season for the 28-year-old. He’s off to a so-so start (by his standards) with a .230/.356/.336 line and a pair of home runs in 135 plate appearances. It’ll now be several more weeks before Conforto can try to rebound in advance of a potential trip to free agency.
The Mets’ outfield, meanwhile, is in a tattered state. Along with Conforto, they’re down Brandon Nimmo, Kevin Pillar and Albert Almora Jr. – all of whom have been on the IL for at least a week. As a result, the team is forced to rely on a starting alignment of Cameron Maybin, Johneshwy Fargas and Khalil Lee in the grass. It’s obviously not ideal for New York, but the club is nonetheless up a game and a half in the National League East.
Like Conforto, McNeil hasn’t been at the top of his game this year, though he was enjoying a solid month prior to his IL placement. Overall, the 29-year-old has batted .242/.336/.374 with three home runs over 113 trips to the plate, and the versatile McNeil has been the Mets’ No. 1 choice at the keystone. Jose Peraza and Jonathan Villar have also racked up at least a handful of starts there, but the latter has mostly handed third base since another of New York’s top hitters – J.D. Davis – landed on the IL on May 2 with a sprained left hand.