Lucas Duda took batting practice on Monday
UPDATE, March 9:
Lucas Duda took batting practice on Monday for the first time in over three weeks, taking 40 swings during the session.
The only step left for Duda, who is recovering from a strained left intercostal muscle, is to enter Grapefruit League action.
After swinging from a tee and hitting underhanded throws on Friday, Duda’s advancement to batting practice on Monday puts him on track for a return to game action this week.
Mets manager Terry Collins told reporters that first baseman Lucas Duda has a “mild” oblique strain but will begin swinging a bat again in two or three days.
According to Duda, the issue arose a few weeks ago and he has not swung a bat since.
Collins noted that the injury is not considered serious and that Duda will continue to participate in fielding drills while he abstains from hitting.
Duda, 29, hit .253/.349/.481 with 30 home runs and 92 RBI last season for the Mets.
It’s expected that Duda will get the bulk of the starts at first base – against both lefties and righties – but he may be spelled on occasion by either Michael Cuddyer or John Mayberry, Jr. against some of the tougher left-handed starting pitchers.
Little injuries will always pop up during Spring Training and there’s no reason to think Duda’s issue is any more serious than the Mets are letting on.
During Spring Training – especially this early on – it’s typical for teams to err on the side of caution whenever an issue occurs, and it seems that’s exactly what the Mets are doing.
If the week passes and Duda is not yet back swinging a bat and/or the injury is deemed more serious than is being reported, it’ll be time to worry. Until then, there’s really no need for concern.
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