Mets recall Conforto with Nieuwenhuis hurt

Mets recall Conforto with Nieuwenhuis hurt

NEW YORK -- On Sunday, just one day after optioning him to Triple-A Las Vegas, the Mets recalled Michael Conforto and placed Kirk Nieuwenhuis on the 15-day disabled list.

Nieuwenhuis did not play in the past three games as he attempted to ease the discomfort of a pinched nerve in his neck. When a cortisone shot proved ineffective, the Mets placed him on the DL and filled his spot on the 25-man roster with Conforto.

Conforto was about to leave for the airport when his phone rang. He was scheduled to make the six-hour flight to Las Vegas on Sunday afternoon and was killing time in his hotel room.

"Well, they actually turned the plane around for me," Conforto joked in the clubhouse.

Conforto wasn't in the lineup on Sunday, but manager Terry Collins anticipates putting him in left field in Miami on Monday and Wednesday, when the Mets face right-handed pitchers.

"He wouldn't be here if he wasn't going to play," Collins said. "You'll see him in Miami. I just think if he's here, you've got to play those guys."

Conforto has impressed Collins during his brief stint in the Major Leagues. Minor League scouting reports had Collins expecting a talented offensive player who would struggle to defend at the big league level, but Collins said he's been more than competent in left field.

"He's handled left field very, very well," Collins said. "I heard he was a below-average defender in college. I'll tell you what, whoever had him in the Minor Leagues did a good job, because he's played left field very well."

In six games this season, Conforto is batting .211 with two doubles and three RBIs.

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