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Sunday, September 1, 2013
Ike injury opens door for Duda

By Adam Rubin

WASHINGTON -- Terry Collins and Lucas Duda had a candid conversation after Duda returned from Triple-A Las Vegas on Aug. 24.

"We talked about the situation in the outfield," Collins said. "And he said you, 'You know, I'm a first baseman.' And I said, 'I'm well aware of it.'"

Now, the Mets have the playing time to offer Duda at first base.

Ike Davis is likely lost for the season because of a strained right oblique. Davis will accompany the Mets to Atlanta to take part in the team's Monday night fantasy football draft, after a matinee against the Braves. Davis then will go to New York to have an MRI to get more specifics about the severity of his injury.

Collins figures Duda will perform better at the plate because he is playing a comfortable position rather than the outfield.

The manager recalled Duda being used at first base after Davis suffered what ended up being a season-ending ankle injury on May 10, 2011. Until Nick Evans started getting time at first base during the final month and Duda moved to right field, Duda primarily played first base, and performed better at the plate.

Duda's career major league average as a first baseman: .303 in 165 at-bats.

His career average as an outfielder: .242 in 799 at-bats.

"So I think it will help him," Collins said.