Here we go again, Mets fans.

Today the New York Mets (9-8) placed left fielder Jason Bay and starting pitcher Mike Pelfrey on the disabled list.

Bay suffered a non-displaced fracture of a rib on his left side while attempting a full-extension catch in Game 2 of Monday’s doubleheader with the San Francisco Giants.

Bay did a face plant into the ground after making a diving attempt at the ball. He left the game in the eighth inning. X-rays Monday night were negative, but Bay described his rib area as “sore,” and said he was not breathing normally.

There is no timetable for Bay’s return. An MRI exam administered Tuesday morning at Manhattan’s Hospital for Special Surgery revealed the extent of the injury. According to reports, Bay will do nothing more strenuous than ride a stationary bike until the pain in his ribcage subsides.

“I knew it hurt pretty well,” Bay told reporters after the game. “I was hoping, best case, that it was a bruise. I got up this morning and the way it was feeling, if it was a bruise, it was a pretty good one.”

Bay had rebounded from a weak start to hit .290 with all three of his home runs since April 13. He was 5-for-15 over his past five games, reaching base more than 44 percent of the time and significantly reducing his strikeout rate (seven strikeouts in his last eight games; ten strikeouts his first seven).

It is hard not to feel bad for Bay. The 33-year-old’s rib fracture is the latest of several significant injuries he has endured since joining the Mets two years ago on a four-year, $66 million contract.

Most of them have been the result of bad luck. Bay suffered a serious concussion crashing into Dodger Stadium’s outfield fence in July 2010, then strained his left intercostal muscle last spring and began the season on the shelf.

After having as bleak a first two years in Queens as Bay did (18 homeruns), it finally looked like Bay was starting to turn the corner the last two weeks. Yet after another bad luck injury, it is hard to imagine that Bay can ever have a happy ending in the Big Apple. 

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