Walker, Pillar hurt after Mets add Conforto, McNeil to IL

MLB

ATLANTA (AP)Taijuan Walker and Kevin Pillar joined a long list of injured New York Mets players as both were forced to leave Monday night’s 3-1 win against the Atlanta Braves.

Walker pitched only three innings, allowing one hit and no runs, before exiting with tightness in his left side.

With the bases loaded in the seventh, Pillar was hit square in the face by a 95 mph fastball from Jacob Webb. The veteran outfielder was knocked to the ground with blood pouring from his nose.

Pillar was quickly helped to his feet with towels covering his face as he was escorted off the field. After the game, Mets manager Luis Rojas said Pillar was taken to the hospital for a CT scan. Pillar then provided an encouraging update on his Twitter account.

”Thanks to everyone that has reached out! Scary moment but I’m doing fine!” he posted.

Braves players, including Webb, watched the scary scene in shock. As members of the Atlanta grounds crew covered the blood left in the batter’s box area, Webb was removed from the game.

The injuries to Walker and Pillar came after the Mets added two regulars to the injured list before the game. Ace starter Jacob deGrom already is on the IL, recovering from right side tightness.

New York placed outfielder Michael Conforto and second baseman Jeff McNeil on the 10-day IL with hamstring injuries.

Right-hander Sean Reid-Foley replaced Walker to start the fourth inning. Walker will have an MRI on Tuesday, according to Rojas.

Conforto strained his right hamstring and McNeil strained his left in Sunday’s 7-1 loss at Tampa Bay.

”We’re taking a week-to-week approach with both of these guys,” Rojas said.

Conforto and McNeil will remain with the Mets while receiving treatment.

Conforto said Monday he had been dealing with other injuries, including a sore calf.

”I felt like I had a good grip on all that stuff and something obviously wasn’t right going down to first base and unfortunately it grabbed on me and that’s where we’re at,” he said.

Conforto described the injury as ”very, very frustrating.”

McNeil missed time last week with cramping in his leg and said Sunday the injuries might be related.

McNeil is hitting .242 with three homers and eight RBIs. Conforto is hitting .230 with two homers and 13 RBIs.

Conforto and McNeil join an injured list that also includes third baseman J.D. Davis, outfielder Brandon Nimmo, reliever Seth Lugo and starting pitchers Carlos Carrasco and Noah Syndergaard, as well as a couple of big league backups in outfielder Albert Almora Jr. and infielder Luis Guillorme.

The Mets purchased the contract of Johneshwy Fargas from Triple-A Syracuse and he started in center field Monday night. The 26-year-old Fargas had a run-scoring double in the eighth for his first hit in his major league debut.

Jose Peraza started at second base.

”We’re very excited our depth has helped us be where we are today,” Rojas said. ”We feel pretty strong about our guys coming in.”

The Mets (19-16) lead the NL East.

New York also recalled outfielder Khalil Lee from Syracuse and transferred Lugo to the 60-day injured list.

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