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Monday, April 2, 2012
Francisco headed for MRI on knee

By Adam Rubin

Closer Frank Francisco is headed for an MRI on his left knee this afternoon. He had the knee drained Monday and long tossed today back at the Mets' spring-training complex.

“Early in camp I felt a little sore in there and it went away," Francisco told reporters in Port St. Lucie. "In the last three days, I felt soreness in there again, but that's it. We're going to take care of that. I did my workout and everything, and it felt fine, but they're going to take a look at it.”

Francisco -- who signed a two-year, $12 million contract during the offseason -- dismissed any disabled list consideration.

“The last game I pitched, the first inning was fine," he said. "But then, when I sat on the bench, resting for the next inning, I felt like my knee got cold a little bit. I didn't feel like it was right. I didn't feel pain or anything. I just felt like swelling I guess. I had some fluid.”

UPDATE: Manager Terry Collins said Francisco’s ailing left knee is a “little bit of concern.”

“It’s been bothering him all spring,” Collins said. “We thought it was getting better. He wanted to pitch through it. There were some days it didn’t bother him very much. The other day, when he threw the two innings, it stiffened up on him. The next day it was irritating him a little bit, so we had him checked and we’ll see where we are.”

Collins added that he is unsure who would close if Francisco were unavailable.

The Mets also acquired right-handers Jon Rauch and Ramon Ramirez for late inning work, but each has produced Grapefruit League ERAs of 7.94 and 5.25. Bobby Parnell, who struggled in the closer’s role last September after Jason Isringhausen notched his 300th career save, has enjoyed the best spring training. Parnell tossed three scoreless innings Monday against the Atlanta Braves, and has not allowed a run in 12 1/3 Grapefruit League innings.