Mets call up Turner; Reyes sits again

Updated: July 17, 2010, 1:09 PM ET
By Adam Rubin | ESPNNewYork.com

SAN FRANCISCO -- New York Mets shortstop Jose Reyes staved off a trip to the disabled list Friday, but the organization opted for more depth in the middle infield with Reyes nursing a right oblique injury.

Infielder Justin Turner was summoned from Triple-A Buffalo and was active for Friday's game against the San Francisco Giants.

Nick Evans, who had been serving as a right-handed bat for the bench with Fernando Tatis out for the season with a shoulder injury, was demoted to Double-A Binghamton.

Turner, 25, was claimed off waivers from the Baltimore Orioles in May. He was 0-for-9 at the major league level with Baltimore this season before joining the Mets organization. With Buffalo, Turner was hitting .297 with three homers and 16 RBIs in 175 at-bats.

The move doesn't mean Reyes' issues are behind him.

A day after Mets officials announced that team doctors would not clear Reyes for baseball activities until he was pain-free on his right side, Reyes was allowed to take limited batting practice Friday. When Reyes reported feeling passable during the activity, the Mets demoted Evans to clear the roster room for Turner and left Reyes on the active roster -- but unavailable to start.

Reyes originally injured the oblique muscle while taking batting practice June 30 in Puerto Rico. He has not played in a game since last Saturday, when David Wright alerted the training staff after seeing Reyes wince while making a throw in the seventh inning at Citi Field.

Manager Jerry Manuel said Reyes would not return to the lineup before Sunday against Giants left-hander Jonathan Sanchez. That day, the switch-hitting Reyes could bat from his more comfortable right side. Still, Manuel called Reyes' return Sunday only a "possibility."

Added the manager: "If he comes tomorrow and the thing is barking, then I think they'll back him off even further."

Meaning the DL?

"That could be a possibility," Manuel said.

If the Mets ultimately did place Reyes on the DL, he would be eligible to return July 27, when the Mets open their next homestand against the St. Louis Cardinals. That's because a DL trip could be backdated to Reyes' last game appearance.

With Reyes unavailable Thursday and with Turner still in the minors, the Mets had no depth in the middle infield beyond Ruben Tejada and Alex Cora. If either had to leave the lineup, Manuel said, the manager was prepared to place Wright at shortstop.

Manuel watched Reyes take roughly 30 swings from the left side in an indoor batting cage Friday afternoon and said: "It was the most authority he's shown since he had that [injury] in Puerto Rico. ... I was really encouraged with what I saw in the cage."

As for why one day doctors did not want Reyes doing any activity until he was pain-free, and the next day he was allowed to proceed, Manuel said: "I think what they wanted him to do was an activity of some sort. Just one activity -- and the activity he wanted to do was swing. He could have taken ground balls and threw, but he wanted to swing."

Adam Rubin covers the Mets for ESPNNewYork.com. You can follow him on Twitter.

Adam Rubin has covered the Mets since 2003. He's a graduate of Mepham High School on Long Island and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. He joined ESPNNewYork after spending 10 years at the New York Daily News.
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