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Jeff McNeil leaves game with abdominal tightness

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The Mets are calling the move “precautionary.”

MLB: New York Mets at San Diego Padres Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

After hitting a single and running the bases in the top of the third inning of today’s game against the Nationals, Jeff McNeil did not return to take the field in the bottom of the inning. The Mets informed SNY that his departure was due to “abdominal tightness” and that it was “precautionary.” McNeil made a hard slide into second base in the top of the third inning in an attempt to break up a double play, but it is unclear if his discomfort is at all related to the play.

McNeil leads Mets hitters with a 158 wRC+ in 2019 and his .352 batting average is second only to Cody Bellinger among all qualified hitters. With Brandon Nimmo struggling this season, McNeil has slotted perfectly into the leadoff role for the Mets and the team could ill afford to lose his bat for any significant time. While McNeil’s tenure in the minor leagues was riddled with injuries, he has been healthy so far during his time with the Mets.

Juan Lagares has entered the game in McNeil’s stead in center field, with Brandon Nimmo shifting to left field.