Paulino in toe jam

Ronny Paulino walked as a pinch-hitter in the seventh inning. And Terry Collins immediately replaced him at first base with Chris Capuano to run.

Paulino will be examined in New York on Thursday to determine if he really does have a fractured toe … and, if he does, whether he can still play with it -- at least serving as a pinch-hitter and then being replaced by a runner.

Ronny Paulino

Ronny Paulino

#9 C
New York Mets

2011 STATS

  • GM64
  • HR1

  • RBI15

  • R17

  • OBP.329

  • AVG.289

“I think I can do that,” Paulino said after Wednesday’s game. “It doesn’t feel as bad when I turn my body when I hit.”

An X-ray in Philadelphia was inconclusive for a break.

“Tomorrow I’m going to know for sure what’s happening,” Paulino said. “I don’t think they had a good look on the first one.”

Is it practical for Paulino to stay active and be used in a pinch-hitting capacity, then be replaced by a runner when he reaches base? Either way, the Mets did promote third catcher Mike Nickeas to serve as the backup catcher since Paulino can’t squat behind the plate.

“Maybe,” Collins said about that usage. “We’ll have to wait to see what the doctors say.”

Paulino became injured when Cliff Lee fouled a ball off in Monday’s series opener.

The Mets already placed Jon Niese (intercostal muscle strain) on the disabled list Wednesday. Scott Hairston (oblique) is expected to be placed on the DL Friday. So if Paulino lands on the DL, the Mets would have lost three players in the series in Philadelphia.