As Ike Davis waited to give answers to a group of reporters at his locker Sunday morning about his Valley Fever diagnosis, he said, “Not so close.” He quickly added, grinning: “I’m just kidding.”
The Mets’ first baseman was riffing on his likely case of Valley Fever, which the Mets say is the “working diagnosis” of the fungal disease doctors believe Ike Davis has. He can kid because he says he feels terrific, has none of the flu-like symptoms (or worse) that can accompany the malady and is not contagious. He also doesn’t believe the sickness will affect his season.
“If I had a cough or felt sick, I’d have maybe worries or something like that, but I feel great,” Davis said. “It’s kind of weird.
I’m not coughing, I’m not throwing up blood, anything. It’s not even hard to breathe. The doctor said I could play, but don’t get really, really fatigued. So that’s what we’re doing. If I get really tired, I kind of just step to the side and take a break.”
Terry Collins says he doesn’t believe that Valley Fever will affect the way he uses Davis during the regular season or prevent Davis from playing a full season. Mets GM Sandy Alderson said his concern level about the situation was low.
“What I understand is that quite often there are no real significant issues with this and when there are, it usually has to do with a compromised immune system or something else going on with the patient,” Alderson said.
While Valley Fever can resolve itself, which is what the Mets say they believe will happen with Davis, it has wrecked at least one major leaguer’s season. Conor Jackson, a former Diamondbacks outfielder, played only 30 games because of it in 2009. Davis says he knows Jackson, who is in the Texas Rangers’ camp, and plans to speak to him about the disease.
“Extreme cases, I could imagine it would be tough, but I don’t think I have an extreme case,” Davis said. “I feel great now. Obviously, if it gets bad, you guys will find out because I won’t be playing. I feel great now and I don’t see anything in the future. I could’ve had it for six months and not known. I can’t answer a lot of questions about the future, but as of right now, I’d be playing.”