Mets prospect homers trying to make ‘major’ impression

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — David Thompson had to settle for an invite to minor league camp this year, but that won’t preclude him from receiving chances on a bigger stage.

One presented itself Monday, when the 25-year-old third baseman was in the Mets’ starting lineup at Ballpark of the Palm Beaches and smashed a three-run homer in a 3-3 Grapefruit League tie with the Astros. Overall, the Mets had only two hits.

Thompson was in major league camp last spring, but wasn’t deemed high priority this year after spending most of 2018 rehabbing a broken left hand and elbow issues caused by a bone spur and chips that had to be removed.

“Obviously last year was a tough year, but I was a little nervous the last few days so it felt good to just perform good today,” Thompson said.

In his last full season, Thompson hit 16 homers for Double-A Binghamton in 2017. He played 22 games for Triple-A Las Vegas last season before the injuries.

“Just all-around good athlete and baseball player,” manager Mickey Callaway said. “I like the way he plays the game.”

Brandon Nimmo is scheduled for his first start of the spring — as the designated hitter — on Tuesday, when the Mets face the Tigers in Port St. Lucie. Nimmo was bothered by shoulder fatigue last week and scaled back his workouts, but started a throwing program in recent days.

Travis d’Arnaud isn’t going to speculate on when he might get behind the plate in the Grapefruit League. Callaway recently said the veteran catcher needs to “sync up” his footwork with his throwing in his return from Tommy John surgery.

“Basically it means there are a few more boxes to check before I can get in the game,” d’Arnaud said.

On Monday, he worked on throwing out base runners after receiving a pitch. He also participated in bunt drills in which he had to throw to third and second.

“It feels really good, I am really excited,” d’Arnaud said. “I am not going to guess on a [return] date, but it’s soon.”

Todd Frazier’s initial start of the exhibition season will likely come on Wednesday. The Mets have chosen to hold back Frazier, who took at-bats in a simulated game Monday in Port St. Lucie.

Keon Broxton reached base three times — and delivered a single for the Mets’ only hit other than Thompson’s homer — in a 3-3 Grapefruit League tie with the Astros.

The Astros scored all three of their runs against reliever Jacob Rhame, who surrendered three hits and a walk in the fourth inning.

Jeff McNeil made an accurate throw from left field in hitting the cutoff, helping cause a rundown (the Astros had two players converging at third base) that ended the inning.

Zack Wheeler, Jeurys Familia and Justin Wilson are among those scheduled to face the Tigers in Port St. Lucie. Corey Oswalt is scheduled to face the Braves in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., with the “B” squad.

— Additional reporting by Kevin Kernan

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