Mets keep Plawecki, option Recker, Muno

Mets keep Plawecki, option Recker, Muno

NEW YORK -- The Mets alleviated their logjam at catcher with a surprising twist on Sunday, sending veteran backup Anthony Recker to Triple-A Las Vegas and retaining rookie Kevin Plawecki on the Major League squad.

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New York also optioned infielder Danny Muno to Las Vegas. The moves were necessitated by two returns. Righty Dillon Gee was reinstated from the bereavement list to start on Sunday against the Braves, while infielder Ruben Tejada was reinstated from the paternity list.

Tejada was penciled in at third base on Sunday, a day after Muno tied a club record by committing three errors at the position.

Mets manager Terry Collins said he plans to leave Tejada at third until Daniel Murphy returns from the disabled list. Murphy was shelved with a left quad strain on June 5 and is expected to need just the minimum 15 days on the disabled list, making him a candidate to return next weekend in Atlanta.

Recker, meanwhile, was hitting .143 with two home runs in his third year as New York's backup catcher and fifth Major League season overall. Known to provide occasional pop, Recker has 16 home runs in 424 career at-bats. But he was hitless in his last 12 at-bats and hadn't homered since hitting two in Chicago on May 14.

The Mets had previously given multiple public indications that what they were going to do with Plawecki depended on where the prospect could get the most consistent playing time. When starting catcher Travis d'Arnaud returned from the DL this week, that appeared to be Las Vegas. But Collins said it's Recker going down because Plawecki will be needed to help ease d'Arnaud back into the Major League routine.

Collins gave d'Arnaud a day off after his first two starts back, and said he could give d'Arnaud another day off Monday. If that pattern sticks, Plawecki would assume a larger role than backup catchers do traditionally.

"That's why he will be here, because he's going to play," Collins said. "He's such a good prospect, we're not going to just let him sit on the bench."

Plawecki has managed to hit .211 in 109 at-bats while for the last month dealing with a severe sinus infection, the lingering affects of which left him dizzy, congested and eventually paranoid. He's still sniffly, but cleared to play after several rounds of testing yielded prescriptions of strong antibiotics, nothing more.

"I'm just relieved it's not something worse, with my brain or anything like that," Plawecki said. "It was starting to get a little scary."

Plawecki first started feeling symptoms during the Mets' mid-May road trip to Chicago, where they played a frigid four-game set at Wrigley Field. After that, symptoms of exhaustive grogginess would come and go. Mornings were the roughest, and the symptoms worsened after flights. But even mundane actions like standing up proved difficult for Plawecki, who said of his sinuses: "My entire right side is clogged."

"It was like being drunk," Plawecki said. "That's the only honest way I can describe it."

Joe Trezza is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.