Michael Conforto has not had a setback as he recovers from shoulder surgery, but GM Sandy Alderson said the team does not expect him back until around May 1.
"Everything's going as planned," Alderson said. "There's been no setbacks. But his schedule is such that I don't expect him back until the first of May. Any updates we have will probably be about the time we open camp. Right now, I don't expect him to be ready for opening day."
It was reported in November that Conforto's recovery was progressing well, and he was expected to start swinging a bat by late-January, but Alderson has maintained since earlier this offseason that he didn't expect Conforto to be ready for Opening Day.
Conforto dislocated his shoulder toward the end of last season, which required surgery to repair the posterior capsule. The initial diagnosis was that it would require at least a six-month recovery.
Jul 29, 2017; Michael Conforto (30) hits at Safeco Field. Credit: Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports
"It's tough to put a timeline on these kinds of things," Conforto told SNY earlier this offseason. "I feel great, but... We're still taking it easy, being cautious."
"It's a long season, so if I happen to actually miss a couple of games here and there that's not the end of the world," Conforto concluded. "I want to be playing in October, hopefully."
In advance of Conforto beginning the season on the disabled list, the Mets acquired Jay Bruce, who is expected to play right field while Conforto is out.
Bruce said Wednesday while being reintroduced at Citi Field that he's stayed in touch with Conforto, who was excited about Bruce's return.
"He was pretty easily our best hitter last year and I don't think that's going to be the last time you hear that said about him," Bruce said about Conforto. "He gets it. He's a young kid, but he takes care of his business. He's what an organization needs. He's going to be great. I just want him to get healthy. I want him to take his time and get healthy and when he comes back be able to be the asset he can be and was last year."
Conforto, who made the All Star team last year for the first time in his career, had been hitting .279/.384/.555 with 27 home runs and 68 RBI in 109 games before injuring his shoulder.