The Mets have activated center fielder Juan Lagares, who had suffered an oblique injury during spring training, from the ten-day disabled list. To make room for him on the active roster, the team optioned right-handed relief pitcher Paul Sewald to Triple-A Las Vegas.
Often injured, Lagares is best known for his work as a defender in center field. In just 79 games last year, he notched 8 DRS and had a 17.6 UZR/150. Both of those metrics are tough to take too seriously in such a small sample, but Lagares passed the eye test, too, playing his typical brand of excellent defense in center. At the plate, however, he’s been limited to success against left-handed pitching in his major league career. Against them, he’s hit .276/.322/.412 with a 105 wRC+, but his .252/.287/.346 line and 76 wRC+ against right-handed pitching have been abysmal.
As for Sewald, the 26-year-old got his first taste of the major leagues after being called up as the Mets’ eighth relief pitcher. He made two appearances and totaled just one-and-one-third innings, and he’ll head back to Vegas with a 13.50 ERA and 5.23 FIP in the big leagues. He seems pretty likely to get another shot, though, whenever the Mets need or want to call up a reliever from Vegas again.
And perhaps most importantly to the vast majority of Mets fans, Sewald’s demotion means that beloved outfielder Michael Conforto remains on the Mets’ major league roster.