Francisco's rehab delayed after knee discomfort

Francisco's rehab delayed after knee discomfort

NEW YORK -- Mets closer Frank Francisco, who has been on the disabled list since June 23 with a strained left oblique, will not begin a rehab assignment with Class A Brooklyn on Tuesday, as originally planned.

The Mets announced late Monday that Francisco is feeling discomfort in his right knee and that he received a shot, which pushes his date for a rehab outing to at least Wednesday.

Mets general manager Sandy Alderson said Monday that Francisco will likely make two rehab outings and then be reevaluated after his second outing, adding that he is optimistic that "he'll be pretty close" by that point.

Francisco said that he has no specific goals for the rehab assignment, other than making sure his lingering strain won't act up. He threw a 40-pitch bullpen session at Citi Field on Sunday and said afterward that he felt no soreness in the oblique.

"See if I can hit my spot, that's it," Francisco said of the assignment. "That's the only thing I'm going to try to do, is hit my spot."

Mike Baxter is also moving closer to a return to the Mets as his rehabilitation moved to Triple-A Buffalo on Monday. Baxter displaced his right collarbone when he crashed into the outfield wall on June 1 to preserve Johan Santana's then no-hit bid.

Baxter served only as a DH in games with Class A St. Lucie last week, but played left field on Sunday with Double-A Binghamton.

Manager Terry Collins said he is still unsure whether or not Baxter will join the team in Arizona later this week.