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Kirk Nieuwenhuis suffers knee injury

Mar 3, 2013, 7:02 PM EDT

New York Mets Photo Day Getty Images

Mets outfielder Kirk Nieuwenhuis, battling for a job in spring training, suffered a knee injury this afternoon during a game against the Miami Marlins. In the seventh inning, Nieuwenhuis attempted to steal second and came up limping. The 25-year-old says he simply bruised his left knee badly, but he had to be transported via cart from the dugout to the clubhouse.

More, from Adam Rubin:

“It was on the slide,” Nieuwenhuis said. “I just hit it on something. Hopefully it’s just a bad bruise. When I went to go take my lead, it just kind of buckled a little bit, but I think the ligaments are OK. I haven’t seen a doctor yet, but I think I just have got a bad bruise. … I don’t think it’s that bad.”

The Mets entered camp with a surfeit of questions surrounding their outfield and now must add one more. Jordany Valdespin, already helping himself with a .412 average in 17 spring at-bats, seems the likely successor in the absence of Nieuwenhuis. Valdespin, though, has been used exclusively at second base so far.

Nieuwenhuis impressed early in 2012, posting a .325 average in April. The struggles began to mount and his average plummeted, hitting .263 in May, .238 in June, and .105 in July. The Mets then optioned him to Triple-A Buffalo. After only five games, he had to be shelved with a nagging plantar fasciitis injury. The Mets certainly hope the lack of concern by Nieuwenhuis is more accurate than wishful thinking.

  1. dondada10 - Mar 3, 2013 at 7:14 PM

    Captain Kirk wasn’t looking good at the dish before this. Cowgill looks like he might break camp as the everyday center fielder.

  2. mazblast - Mar 3, 2013 at 11:56 PM

    I’m not sure if I’ve ever seen a group of spring training outfielders with less potential than this year’s Mets assemblage.

  3. punksinplay - Mar 4, 2013 at 10:00 AM

    Sorry to say it but this guy is soft.

  4. ningenito78 - Mar 4, 2013 at 10:46 AM

    What with the use of the word ‘surfeit’ in the articles today? Did somebody learn a new word over the weekend?

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