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Mets' Carlos Mendoza: 'Fair to say' Kodai Senga unlikely to return before All-Star break

Mets manager Carlos Mendoza outlined the next steps in Kodai Senga’s injury rehab and said there is no timetable yet for the right-hander’s long-awaited return from the injured list.

“Played long toss, it’s more long toss this weekend and then hopefully he can start throwing bullpens at some point at the beginning of next week,” he said before the Mets' first game in London against the Philadelphia Phillies.

Senga began the season on the IL due to a capsule strain in his shoulder and was initially projected to make his season debut around the beginning of June. However, Senga paused his rehab and then sustained a setback around the time the process reached the bullpen stage last month.

Given that setback, when asked how long the bullpen stage of his rehab will last this time before he can take the next steps in his rehab, the manager began shaking his head before the reporter’s question was finished.

“I wish I could tell you,” Mendoza said. “But, it’s gonna be day to day, especially after he starts throwing bullpens and how he’s gonna bounce back after those sessions and then we continue the progressions.

“But as of right now, it’s still hard to put a timetable.”

With the All-Star Game five weeks away, Mendoza said "it is fair to say" Senga is unlikely to make his debut during the season's first half.

The right-hander last threw a bullpen session on May 15, before he sustained the tricep setback. Senga threw 20 pitches of a live session against hitters from High-A Brooklyn at Citi Field on May 1 and anticipated returning when eligible on May 27, but then took a step back instead of moving to a rehab assignment so he could make a few mechanical adjustments.

Senga began playing light catch at the start of June and throwing on flat ground around Memorial Day weekend after he received a cortisone shot toward the end of May when an MRI revealed nerve inflammation in his tricep.

At the end of May, Senga voiced some of his frustrations with his rehab.

“It’s obviously not ideal, a lot of regretful feelings,” he said, via an interpreter. “I just want to get back out there. I’m here at the stadium and I see all the guys fighting. It really makes me want to have the urge to get back out there and pitch for the team.”