Although he didn't figure to make the Opening Day roster, Matt den Dekker, the strikeout-prone plus-defending center fielder, guaranteed that his season will begin in the minors when he broke his wrist trying to catch a fly ball this afternoon as the Mets hosted the Tigers in a Grapefruit League game.
Throughout spring training, den Dekker showed Mets fans why he's been so highly praised for his defensive ability in center. The problem, though, was that he struggled mightily as a hitter when he was called up to Triple-A during last season, hitting just .220/.256/.373 in 317 plate appearances. Now, he's likely to get plenty of work at the same level, playing in Las Vegas, a very hitter-friendly environment, once his wrist heals.
Mets general manager Sandy Alderson indicated that the team was uncertain whether or not den Dekker would require surgery. The team has sent him to New York City for further examination.