Kodai Senga heads to Triple-A Syracuse for next Mets rehab start

WASHINGTON — Kodai Senga aced the first test in a minor league rehab appearance and will now move ahead two levels for his next. 

The Mets right-hander will pitch next week for Triple-A Syracuse — most likely on Tuesday, according to manager Carlos Mendoza — in a 50-pitch appearance. 

Senga threw 35 pitches on Wednesday in a rehab appearance for High-A Brooklyn in which he touched 97 mph on the radar gun and struck out six over 2 ¹/₃ scoreless innings without allowing a hit. 

Mets pitcher Kodai Senga throws in the third inning during a rehab start with the Brooklyn Cyclones
Mets pitcher Kodai Senga throws in the third inning during a rehab start with the Brooklyn Cyclones. Corey Sipkin for the NY POST

“All the reports were positive,” Mendoza said before the Mets lost 1-0 to the Nationals on Thursday. “He did well. The velocity was there and he used all of his pitches. He is trending in the right direction.” 

Mendoza said the plan is to build up Senga into the 75-80 pitch range before activating him.

Senga hasn’t pitched for the Mets this season as he works back from a shoulder strain that occurred early in spring training. 

Harrison Bader was available off the bench, according to Mendoza, after missing a second straight start following his collision with the outfield fence on Tuesday.

Tyrone Taylor started in center field with Ben Gamel in right and combined to go 0-for-6. 

J.D. Martinez received a planned day off following a night game, putting DJ Stewart’s left-handed bat in the lineup against Jake Irvin.

J.D. Martinez #28 of the New York Mets reacts after striking out to end the eighth inning against the Washington Nationals
J.D. Martinez got the day off. Getty Images

It was only the second appearance for Stewart since June 23.

Stewart, who drew a second-inning walk, was one of two Mets batters to reach base.

Jeff McNeil singled in the third for the Mets’ only hit. 

Edwin Diaz threw in simulated games Sunday and Wednesday, according to pitching coach Jeremy Hefner, to keep active during his 10-game suspension for applying a sticky substance to his right hand. Diaz’s suspension is scheduled to conclude before Saturday’s game.

The Mets have played a man short for the past nine games. 

Longtime team photographer Marc Levine passed away, the Mets announced. 

“We are incredibly heartbroken to learn of Marc Levine’s passing,” Mets owners Steve and Alex Cohen said in a statement. “He was the longest tenured photographer in team history. Marc documented every Mets moment for the last three and a half decades. He had a kind heart and a wonderful photographic eye. We extend our deepest condolences to his family and friends.”

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