JUPITER, Fla. -- Heading into the weekend, the Mets thought Brandon Nimmo would be healthy enough to return to Grapefruit League action as soon as Saturday. But Nimmo tweaked his right hamstring during baserunning drills Friday, according to manager Terry Collins, forcing him back to the sideline for another couple of days.
With a team off-day scheduled for Tuesday, it is unlikely Nimmo will return to Grapefruit League action before Wednesday.
That gives Nimmo a little more than a week to round himself back into regular-season shape. If he's able to do so, Nimmo will be a strong contender for the Mets' fifth outfield spot. If not, the team may have to consider more seriously the prospect of carrying Michael Conforto as a bench player. Alternatively, Ty Kelly could make the club as a utilityman.
A member of Team Italy, Nimmo originally pulled his hamstring chasing after a fly ball in World Baseball Classic pool play. He went 2-for-11 with a home run during the Classic, also batting .476 in 21 Grapefruit League at-bats prior to leaving for the Classic.
Issue resolved: The Mets expect reliever Fernando Salas to report to camp Sunday morning, his visa issue in Mexico finally resolved.
Salas did not appear in a Grapefruit League game prior to leaving for the World Baseball Classic because of his visa snag, which took longer to resolve than the Mets originally anticipated. The reliever spent several days in Mexico acquiring his visa following Team Mexico's elimination from Classic play.
The organization's hope is that Salas, who will slide into an eighth-inning setup role if Jeurys Familia is suspended to start the season, can make his Grapefruit League debut no later than Monday. The Mets will then pitch him every other day from now until the camp breaks.
"We've got to get him in the games and get him going," Collins said of Salas, who returned to the Mets on a one-year, $6 million deal in February.
From the back fields: Rather than pitch in the Mets' Grapefruit League game against the Cardinals, Noah Syndergaard stayed back in Port St. Lucie, Fla. to start a Minor League game. He struck out eight batters over five innings, allowing two hits, a walk and one unearned run.
Anthony DiComo has covered the Mets for MLB.com since 2008. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.