Cabrera, 30, was diagnosed on Friday with a strained patellar tendon in his left knee, a day after departing a Grapefruit League game. He received a platelet-rich plasma injection from team doctors in New York and was instructed to do no activity for two weeks.
Given Opening Day is in three weeks, and Cabrera will have to ease back into activity after the period of idleness, it suggests the veteran shortstop will open the season on the disabled list.
Teams can backdate disabled-list stints nine days into spring training, so Cabrera could miss as few as the first six days of the season if he lands on the DL. The Mets play only three times in the first six days anyway.
"I don't know," Cabrera said. "I've just got to wait and see how my knee feels."
He added: "I want to be healthy. That takes time. I want to be ready for the opening day, of course. But we've got to see how these first two weeks go."
Cabrera signed a two-year, $18.5 million contract with the Mets in December.
Cabrera noted he generally likes to get a lot of spring-training action to prepare for the season. That's out the window now. He has only 12 Grapefruit League at-bats so far. From 2008 through 2015, he has gotten 53, 57, 43, 55, 57, 33, 56 and 52 at-bats heading into the season. And the 33 at-bat spring training in 2013 does not include his participation representing Venezuela in the World Baseball Classic.
"I like to get at-bats, because you want to be ready for the season," Cabrera said. "Now I'm going to lose two weeks."