Church (concussion), Castillo (quad) back in Mets lineup
NEW YORK -- Mets outfielder Ryan Church, who's been out of the lineup following his second concussion this year, and second baseman Luis Castillo were back in the starting lineup Sunday night as New York beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 6-1.
Church, who went 3-for-4 with a two-run home run, was hurt May 20 trying to break up a game-ending double play at Atlanta. He hasn't started since then but has been available to pinch hit, and shagged fly balls running full speed without any problems on Saturday.
"That was my biggest thing, being able to run, stop and have my equilibrium," Church said. "I talked to a doctor this morning and they gave me the go-ahead."
Acquired in an offseason trade with Washington, Church quickly has become one of the Mets' most consistent players. He's batting .309 with nine home runs and 32 RBIs, and provides some stability for an outfield that's still without Moises Alou, Marlon Anderson and Angel Pagan because of injuries.
Church also sustained a concussion when he collided with Anderson in an exhibition game March 1.
"It just happened. It was a fluke," Church said. "They told me to just quit running into people and I'll be fine."
Castillo, who went 0-for-5 Sunday, didn't start Saturday because of a strained left hip flexor, though he said the injury was actually to the upper quad. He pinch-hit in the eighth inning.
He walked around the clubhouse Sunday with a large ice pack around his left leg, but manager Willie Randolph said Castillo would be at full speed.
"We're starting to look more like a full squad," Randolph said.
Randolph said the Mets haven't decided yet what move they will make to open a roster spot for Pedro Martinez, who is slated to come off the disabled list Tuesday and make his second start of the season at San Francisco.
Mike Pelfrey has minor league options remaining and said Sunday he's prepared for the possibility of getting sent to Triple-A New Orleans, even after tossing seven solid innings to keep New York close in a 3-2 win over the Dodgers on Saturday night.
Claudio Vargas is another option, but he would have to clear waivers. The Mets also might send reliever Carlos Muniz down and shift Pelfrey to the bullpen, though Randolph said the young right-hander's future is in the rotation.
"We're going to sit down as an organization, me and Omar more than anything, in the next couple days," Randolph said. "We're going to get somebody as far as the balance of the club. We're going to do what we need to do for the parent team."
Information from The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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