PHILADELPHIA -- Jenrry Mejia is a step closer to returning to the Majors.
The Mets on Thursday promoted the 20-year-old Mejia back to Double-A Binghamton after a brief stay with Class A St. Lucie. Mejia, who spent his time in St. Lucie recovering from a right rotator cuff strain, will start games for the B-Mets -- though he could rejoin the big club as a reliever if the Mets need bullpen help down the stretch.
In 30 relief appearances with the Mets earlier this season, Mejia posted a 3.25 ERA, striking out 17 batters and walking 15 in 27 2/3 innings. He is widely considered the organization's top starting pitching prospect.
The Mets on Thursday also promoted outfielder Kirk Nieuwenhuis from Binghamton to Triple-A Buffalo. Nieuwenhuis, 22, was batting .289 with 16 homers in 94 games for the B-Mets.