July 18, 2012; Washington, D.C., USA; New York Mets right fielder Lucas Duda (21) doubles in the seventh inning against the Washington Nationals at Nationals Park. The Nationals defeated the Mets 4 - 3. Mandatory Credit: Joy R. Absalon-US PRESSWIRE
The Mets have demoted Lucas Duda to Triple-A Buffalo to clear a roster spot for Matt Harvey, who will make his major-league debut on Thursday. Both Duda and Kirk Nieuwenhuis have struggled lately and looked to be the team's most likely options to clear up a roster spot.
Duda has been a defensive liability in right field, but he was the more consistent hitter of the two. In 355 plate appearances, he hit 12 home runs with a slash line of .241/.335/.398. It's the lack of power that has been most disappointing for Duda.
So for now, the team will stick with the better defender in Nieuwenhuis while Duda works on his game in Buffalo. The roster is back to normal with five starting pitchers and seven relief pitchers with Matt Harvey's activation.