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Cuddyer avoids DL, pinch-hits vs. Dodgers

Mets outfielder says injured knee improved after receiving shots

LOS ANGELES -- Once confident that he would avoid the disabled list, then not so confident, Michael Cuddyer took batting practice prior to Friday's game against the Dodgers and pronounced himself -- once and for all -- healthy enough to avoid an extended absence.

Though Cuddyer was out of the starting lineup Friday for a third straight night, he came off the bench to pinch-hit, striking out in the seventh inning of the 2-1 victory. It was his first action since injuring his knee Tuesday against the Cubs.

"Definitely improved," was how Cuddyer described his knee, two days after receiving a pair of shots in the joint. "It feels better."

Cuddyer, 36, is batting .242 with six home runs in 73 games. The Mets have endeavored to provide at least one off day per week for Cuddyer, who has so far managed to avoid the DL for the first time since 2011.

Initially upon injuring his knee, Cuddyer said he would be able to avoid his first trip there with the Mets. But he was not quite as confident after waking up with continued soreness the next day.

That concern has since all but vanished.

"They wanted to let that shot take effect," manager Terry Collins said. "He came in today and said he felt … better."

Worth noting

• Catcher Travis d'Arnaud is still wearing a heavy brace on his sprained left arm, and is not performing any baseball activities. The Mets have no timetable for his return, aside from the knowledge that he will not come off the DL when he is eligible Monday. D'Arnaud traveled to Port St. Lucie, Fla. on Thursday to continue his treatment with the team on the road.

Anthony DiComo is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo and Facebook, and listen to his podcast.
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