BOBBY ABREU got a quick lesson in the Mets' many uniform color combinations from an equipment guy, tried on a few belts in the clubhouse and then hugged new teammate Bartolo Colon.
Always smart for 40-year-olds to stick together in the big leagues.
"Good to be back," Abreu said.
The Mets called up Abreu from the minors last night, hoping the former star outfielder can still provide a few key hits. He stayed on the bench for the Mets' 2-0 win over the visiting St. Louis Cardinals, in which Jenrry Mejia (3-0) pitched four-hit ball into the seventh inning and David Wright extended his hitting streak to 13 games with an RBI single.
Abreu hasn't been in the majors since 2012, when he played a combined 100 games for the Dodgers and Angels. He began spring training this year with the Phillies, was released in late March and signed a minor league deal a few days later with the Mets.
Abreu hit .395 with one homer and nine RBI in 15 games at Triple A Las Vegas.
Abreu will mostly come off the bench as a pinch-hitter. "That's pretty much what it is," he said.
With the callup to the majors, Abreu's salary increases from $108,000 to $800,000.
A former two-time All-Star and Gold Glove winner, he is a .290 hitter since beginning his major league career with Houston in 1996. He has also played for the Phillies, Yankees and Angels.
Abreu has hit 287 home runs in the majors, along with 565 doubles and 399 stolen bases. He also had a patient plan at the plate and keen knowledge of the strike zone, something the Mets are trying to teach their hitters throughout the organization.
Abreu drew 100 or more walks for eight straight seasons in the middle of his career.
"That's the mold, the approach of what we want," Mets manager Terry Collins said. "Work the count, get a good ball to hit."
* At Pittsburgh, the Pirates' Ike Davis became the first player to hit grand slams for different teams in the same April, and Neil Walker had a winning run single with two outs in the ninth inning as Pittsburgh beat the Reds, 6-5. Davis also hit a slam off the Reds on April 5 for the Mets, who traded him to the Pirates on Friday.
* At Chicago, Cubs lefthander Travis Wood (1-2) hit a three-run homer and an RBI double to beat Arizona, 5-1.
* At Atlanta, Evan Gattis hit a two-run homer in the 10th inning to lift the Braves over Miami, 4-2.
* At Milwaukee, Ryan Braun drove in two runs as the Brewers beat San Diego, 4-3.
* At Denver, Charlie Blackmon hit two of Colorado's five home runs to beat San Francisco, 8-2.
* At Washington, Raul Ibanez delivered a tiebreaking, three-run double as a pinch-hitter in the eighth inning as the Los Angeles Angels beat the Nationals, 4-2.
* At Boston, Baltimore rallied against Clay Buchholz (0-2) for six runs in the third inning and held on to beat the Red Sox, 7-6.
* At Cleveland, Jason Kipnis and Michael Brantley hit two-run homers, powering the Indians over the Kansas City Royals, 4-3.
* At Detroit, Jose Abreu and Dayan Viciedo hit RBI doubles in the seventh inning, and the Chicago White Sox rallied for a 3-1 victory over the Tigers.