Mets’ Darin Ruf says wrist feels a 'bit better' but unsure how injury will affect him

Darin Ruf
Darin Ruf / Wendell Cruz - USA TODAY Sports

Mets slugger Darin Ruf has been slowed by a wrist injury the last few weeks, and while he’s already made his spring debut, it seems he's still dealing with his ailment.

“Feels a little bit better,” Ruf said of his wrist after his time in Friday night’s loss to the Cardinals wrapped up. "I'm not a doctor, so I don't know how this condition works. Sometimes I think it will bother me, and sometimes it doesn't. I think it's a pain management thing, but I don't know."

In late February, Ruf told reporters he received a cortisone shot in his right wrist. He also said that an MRI revealed that his wrist showed arthritis, which is why it took so long for the 36-year-old to see spring action with the Mets this year.

Manager Buck Showalter said that the team is trying a different treatment with Ruf and he believes his slugger isn’t worried about it.

“It’s getting a little better every day,” Showalter said after the game. “He’s fine to play. He’s going to be fine.”

The Mets acquired the eight-year veteran at the trade deadline last season to bolster their right-handed power. Prior to joining the Mets, Ruf hit 11 home runs and drove in 38 RBI over 90 games with the Giants. In 28 games with New York, Ruf did not hit the longball and only drove in seven runs.

Ruf is looking to solidify his spot on the Mets' Opening Day roster as their right-handed power bat off the bench. In six at-bats (two games) this spring, so far, Ruf is 0-for-6 with four strikeouts.

Despite being hitless, Ruf and Showalter are not concerned with his performance.

“He’s a veteran player getting through spring training,” Showalter said. “He had a lot of time off, got an injection. I expect him to get better as the spring goes on. There’s a lot of games left.”

“There's been camps I've done well. There's camps, I've done bad,” Ruf said. “Once the season starts, you could be feeling good and go out and not do good, and you could be feeling bad and something clicks at the beginning of the season. So I don't think there's a rhyme or reason to how things go in spring vs. how they go on day one.”

Ruf has about three weeks of spring training games left to not only have productive at-bats before the Mets begin the season. And with young prospects like Francisco Alvarez and Brett Baty on the cusp of making the roster, it’ll be interesting to see how the veteran responds to this nagging injury and his recent struggles at the plate.