NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Curtis Granderson is out of the lineup again on Friday night in the Mets’ series opener against the Padres.
The three-time All-Star was out of the lineup with a sore left calf Thursday night, leaving the slumping Amazin’s without their cleanup hitter. He pinch-hit in the 11th inning and was intentionally walked.
Granderson has been one of the few productive bats in the lineup lately, reaching base safely in 24 consecutive games. He was replaced in the outfield by Andrew Brown against the Milwaukee Brewers on Thursday and by Chris Young on Friday.
Granderson said his calf began to bother him a little bit Wednesday, though he went 2 for 3 with a double and played the entire game. He said he doesn’t think it’s anything serious and had hoped to start Friday night against San Diego.
“Still barking a little bit, so better to be safe than sorry and take a day here. Heard a lot of stories of guys trying to push through it and the reward isn’t necessarily worth it,” Granderson said. “I didn’t feel anything negative. No pops, no snaps, no grabs, nothing like that. More just an annoyance and soreness right now.”
The Mets’ outfield is in shambles. Center fielder Juan Lagares (ribcage) and left fielder Eric Young Jr. (strained right hamstring) are on the disabled list.
Bobby Abreu is playing right field on Friday night and Matt den Dekker is in center. Daniel Murphy batted leadoff on Thursday for the first time since May 26, 2013, according to STATS. Ruben Tejada is leading off on Friday and Murphy is back in the two hole.
Mets manager Terry Collins said it’s possible Murphy could become a fixture in the leadoff spot after batting second most of the season.
Collins was asked if juggling the lineup makes much of a difference.
“So far it hasn’t,” he said. “You’ve got to try something.”
Ranked near the bottom of the National League in home runs and slugging, New York had lost eight of nine while struggling to hit with runners in scoring position during that stretch.
Granderson got off to a miserable start in his first season with the Mets after signing a $60 million, four-year contract. But he’s come on lately and lifted his on-base percentage to .338 with eight homers and 30 RBIs.
“I don’t think any time is better,” Granderson said on Thursday. “Whenever you do have to miss a game for something you can’t control, it’s always going to be considered bad timing.”
Young, sidelined since May 25, began a rehab assignment at Class-A St. Lucie. He went 1 for 4 with a walk and scored twice.
In other injury news, starting pitcher Dillon Gee (strained lat) is scheduled to throw off a mound this weekend and the club hopes to get him in a minor league game next week.
NOTES: Collins said Young will get transferred to Triple-A Las Vegas before rejoining the big league club. … 3B Zach Lutz was granted his release at Las Vegas so he can join the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles in Japan.
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