Mets reinstate closer Edwin Díaz from injured list and send LHP Danny Young to minors

Updated Jun. 13, 2024 10:51 p.m. ET

NEW YORK (AP) — Edwin Díaz was activated from the injured list Thursday by the New York Mets, and manager Carlos Mendoza reiterated the struggling reliever will immediately return to the closer role.

“I talked to him a couple of days ago and he’s ready to go,” Mendoza said before the finale of a three-game series against Miami. “There’s no hesitation. (He said), ‘I’m ready to go.’ So it was an easy conversation.”

With the Mets trailing by one run, Díaz entered in the ninth and tossed a perfect inning with one strikeout. He threw 15 pitches and averaged 98.4 mph on his seven four-seam fastballs.

Díaz got the win when J.D. Martinez hit a two-run homer off Tanner Scott in the bottom of the ninth to give New York a 3-2 comeback victory.

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“I’m feeling 100 percent,” Díaz said. “I was throwing 99, 100 (mph) today. I didn’t do that earlier in the season.”

To open a roster spot, the Mets optioned Danny Young to Triple-A Syracuse — leaving Jake Diekman as the only left-hander in the bullpen. Young was 2-0 with a 1.00 ERA in nine appearances for New York, striking out 12 in nine innings.

“Obviously, Danny Young has been great. He’s a guy that not only gets lefties out, but righties, and his ability to take the ball day in and day out,” Mendoza said. “But he understood where we were bullpen-wise. Not many guys have (minor league) options.”

Díaz had been sidelined since May 29 with a right shoulder impingement. Before going on the IL, he blew three consecutive save chances and four out of five.

He also squandered a four-run lead in the ninth inning May 18 at Miami but was not charged with a blown save.

Following that meltdown against the Marlins, the right-hander was not used for four games until pitching a scoreless seventh on May 24 against San Francisco. He blew a save the following day.

Going into Thursday, the Mets had converted 15 of 26 save opportunities this year. New York’s bullpen was 4-8 with a 5.13 ERA since May 13.

After missing last season with a knee injury he sustained celebrating a victory by Puerto Rico in the World Baseball Classic, Díaz is 2-1 with a 5.14 ERA and five saves in 21 appearances.

“He means a lot and when he’s rolling, you can feel it,” Mendoza said. “It’s just really good to have him back and we’re all excited about it.”

The two-time All-Star was baseball’s most dominant closer in 2022, striking out 118 batters in 62 innings while saving 32 games for New York and finishing with a 1.31 ERA.

He re-signed with the Mets on a $102 million, five-year contract but then had surgery on the patellar tendon in his right knee.

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AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/mlb

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