NEW YORK -- The clock is ticking on Ike Davis' injured left ankle.
Team doctors will make a decision no later than Sept. 5 as to whether the Mets' first baseman will have surgery on the bone bruise and ankle sprain that have kept him out of action since May 10.
Davis ran for the first time in several weeks Thursday and Friday, with what general manager Sandy Alderson described as "few problems." Alderson said Davis would run again Monday and Tuesday, after which the bopper will be evaluated and his doctors will decide whether to proceed with surgery.
"This came after complete rest for a couple of weeks, so from that standpoint, not having any pain was encouraging," Alderson said Monday. "So we'll see what happens today and tomorrow, and see where that goes."
Alderson said Davis didn't feel any pain during running sessions that he described as "extensive" and "full-on." The decision needs to be made by Labor Day since surgery at a later date would mean Davis would have to miss part of Spring Training while rehabbing.
Prior to his injury, Davis was the Mets' best hitter, batting .302 with an impressive .383 on-base percentage and a .543 slugging percentage in 36 games.
"If he has pain, that would be a big issue, a major red flag," Alderson said. "He had a few problems when he ran previously before the complete rest, so that takes us back several weeks. There was no pain Thursday or Friday."
In other injury news, Alderson said it's "conceivable" that Johan Santana could return to the Mets to pitch an inning or two before the season ends. The ace southpaw has missed all season after having surgery to repair a torn anterior capsule in his shoulder last September.
Alderson said he saw Santana throw a bullpen session last Tuesday, and that it's possible he could pitch in a Minor League game by next weekend.
"He felt great and was encouraged," Alderson said. "We talked a little bit about how we use the rest of the Minor League season, the instructional league opportunity that he has, maybe winter ball, and even some possibility of pitching here if only for an inning or two depending on where he is in his schedule."