NEW YORK -- Mets catcher Brian Schneider was released from a hospital Wednesday after six days of treatment for a staph infection in his left thumb.
Schneider wasn't sure when he will return to the field and that he could still go on the disabled list. The pain will need to subside enough that the thumb can withstand the pounding inside his catcher's glove.
The problem started as a tiny blister during the Mets' series at Philadelphia two weekends ago. After it popped -- it was so small Schneider didn't even notice when that happened -- it became infected.
Schneider first felt discomfort last Tuesday. The thumb was swollen when he woke up Wednesday, but he played through the pain after consulting with the team trainer and a hand specialist. By Thursday, though, it had swelled up so much that he was admitted to the hospital to receive antibiotics intravenously.
Doctors made a small incision in the thumb Monday to drain it, opting for a more minor procedure that might allow him to start playing again sooner.
"Once you cut it open and let it heal from the inside out, you're looking at a couple weeks," Schneider said Wednesday at Shea Stadium before the Mets' game against the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Schneider, who had never been hospitalized before, didn't have much to do to pass the time other than watch TV and root for his teammates.
"It was torture," he said of not being able to help them.