Duda finds swing in return to Mets lineup
PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- Mets right fielder Lucas Duda's bat warmed up in chilly weather in his return to the lineup against the Marlins on Saturday afternoon at Tradition Field.
The 27-year-old, who batted fifth, went 2-for-3 with a home run and two runs scored. The dinger -- his first in Grapefruit League action -- came off left-hander Mike Dunn in the sixth inning. In the previous frame, Duda doubled to left-center.
"We all know he's got the power," Mets manager Terry Collins said. "The home run was just added, but that ball in left-center field -- if he can continue to do that -- he's going to be dangerous."
According to general manager Sandy Alderson, a "minor medical issue" led to Duda's late scratch before Friday's game. Duda had a doctor's appointment earlier in the day, but did come back to the clubhouse. At the time, Collins was unsure whether Duda would return to the lineup on Saturday.
The outfielder missed two games earlier in the week when the Mets thought he wasn't ready for game action, going 0-for-7 with six strikeouts to begin the spring. He had fractured his right wrist moving furniture over the winter.
"I think after the start he had -- I salute him for the fact he finally said I'm not ready to play," Collin said. "He'd have gone out there and gone out there every day without resting. Today, you might walk in that locker room and [he would] say, 'OK, I think I'm going to be OK.'"