Bay likely to return to Mets' lineup Thursday

Bay likely to return to Mets' lineup Thursday

It will be at least two more days until outfielder Jason Bay returns to the Mets, The Associated Press reported Monday afternoon.

The decision was made Monday afternoon after Bay met with Mets general manager Sandy Alderson, assistant general manager John Ricco, manager Terry Collins and head trainer Ray Ramirez at Citi Field.

Bay, on the disabled list with a left rib-cage strain since Spring Training, and Collins originally hoped the left fielder would be able to return for Tuesday's game against the Astros. Instead, a return Thursday appears to be the best bet, according to the report.

Bay has played in two games with Class A St. Lucie of the Florida State League, going 1-for-2 with a walk on Saturday and 0-for-3 on Sunday. According to the AP, Bay will play for St. Lucie on Tuesday against Fort Myers and Wednesday at Port Charlotte.

Bay hasn't played in a regular-season game with the Mets since late July, when he suffered a concussion crashing into the outfield wall at Dodger Stadium. His first season in New York had already been a disappointment with the right-handed hitter batting .259 with six homers in 95 games.

Cash Kruth is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @cashkruth. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.