Mets RHP Kodai Senga takes next step toward return: 'It's a big deal'

Mets ace Kodai Senga has taken another step toward his return, throwing on back-to-back days on Sunday and Monday for the first time since his injury.

He had resumed throwing last week as he works his way back from a moderate right posterior capsule strain.

Speaking on Monday afternoon, manager Carlos Mendoza did not downplay the significance of Senga's latest step, saying "it's a big deal."

"Now that he's letting it loose and doing it for back-to-back days, it's another step that he has to clear," Mendoza said. "We'll see how he responds tomorrow. I don't anticipate it being an issue.

"For him to go up there and play catch on back-to-back days is a pretty big step for him."

The expectation is that Senga will need about six weeks of ramping up to be ready to return, and that process started last week when he began throwing.

So far, Senga has thrown only on flat ground.

Another hurdle will be Senga throwing from the mound, but it isn't clear how close he is to taking that step.

Once Senga advances to mound work, a rehab assignment could soon follow.

The Mets' rotation is being tested early on.

They were without Senga heading into Opening Day, and are now missing Tylor Megill, who landed on the IL on Monday due to a shoulder issue.