Asdrubal Cabrera, seen here earlier in spring, was forced out of Thursday’s game.
PORT ST. LUCIE — Mets shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera was removed from Thursday’s spring training game against the Cardinals in the first inning with a sore left knee.
Cabrera, who signed a two-year contract worth $ 18.5 million as a free agent, was slated to undergo an MRI on Thursday night.
He singled in his first at-bat but pulled up after advancing to second on Yoenis Cespedes’ flyout to left-center. Following a walk to Lucas Duda, Cabrera summoned Terry Collins and trainer Ray Ramirez to second base and was removed from the game. He was replaced by Ruben Tejada, who belted a two-run homer in the Mets’ 7-2 win.
“I was thinking to slide, but saw the bad throw, so I tried to stand up and I felt something in my knee,” Cabrera said. “It’s all right now. I’m walking fine and I’ve just got to go do my (MRI) to see what we’ve got. I don’t think it’s (anything) serious.”
Still, Cabrera’s injury underscores the Mets’ pending decision on Tejada, whose $ 3 million salary — high for a middle-infield backup — can be reduced to roughly $ 750,000 if he is cut before the April 3 opener.
The Cardinals, who are expected to be without starting shortstop Jhonny Peralta for up to three months following thumb surgery, could be in the market for a stopgap at the position.
“Ruben’s got something to prove,” Collins said. “He saw the deal. He knew what was going on in the winter time. A lot of people are talking about, ‘You’re not going to be around. You’re going to get traded.’ He’s going out there with a little chip on his shoulder.”
Fred and Jeff Wilpon, Sandy Alderson, Collins, ex-Mets Edgardo Alfonzo, Jason Isringhausen and John Franco and much of the current team, staff, front office and media attended an emotional memorial for Shannon Forde, the media relations director who died last week from cancer, after the game. Alderson, who was diagnosed with cancer in the offseason, was among those who spoke at the service.
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