Delgado missed his third straight game Wednesday against the Atlanta Braves, and Mets manager Jerry Manuel said the team would likely make a decision during a road trip that starts in San Francisco on Thursday night.
"I think he's still somewhat sore, more than anything else," Manuel said before an 8-7, 12-inning loss to Atlanta. "I'm not confident at all. I don't want to be a pessimist, but because of the reoccurrence, it's not comforting -- or I'm not confident in the fact that it will be OK. But if it's something we can manage, which is what we're trying to do, then I'm OK with that."
Manuel wasn't worried that Delgado's hip would become even more painful during a cross-country plane ride.
"How else you going to get to the West Coast? Take a horse?" he quipped.
Delgado was injured April 26 while sliding during a triple against the Washington Nationals. He missed five straight starts and then returned to the lineup May 4 and played seven straight games -- all won by the Mets -- before the pain became too great. The 36-year-old cleanup hitter is batting .298 with four homers and 23 RBIs.
"I feel a little better today. You know, it's still pretty sore and stiff," Delgado said. "I guess in the next couple days we'll have a better picture of what we are going to do."
Delgado already had a cortisone shot, but it doesn't appear to have helped as much as a cortisone shot that relieved hip soreness during spring training last year. He isn't contemplating another shot.
"We're not talking about vitamins. It's not one a day," he said. "We'll stick to plan and see how I bounce back over the weekend and we'll make a decision."
Manuel hasn't started to think about a replacement for Delgado on the active roster.
"We would probably need another position player. Obviously, for me, it would probably be a left-handed hitter. And obviously, hopefully, a pretty good hitter," Manuel said. "We're hoping that we don't have to go that way. We're hoping. We're trying to take every measure that we can to not go that way. But at some point over this next couple days we're going to have to explore those options."
Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press
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