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Mets injury update: Asdrubal Cabrera optimistic on Opening Day availability

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The shortstop's strained patella appears to be healing nicely.

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Asdrubal Cabrera strained his left patella on March 11, creating speculation that he would not be ready for Opening Day. Although he was already optimistic about his availability, on Monday Cabrera took ground balls and expressed renewed confidence that he would be ready in time for the April 3 game against the Royals.

Cabrera said "I feel really good, but we have to see how it feels tomorrow. I am day to day, but I hope I am ready."

Additionally, Terry Collins expressed the desire to get Cabrera some at-bats as a designated hitter in a minor league game by the end of the weekend. The Mets' medical staff must clear him to run the bases, but Cabrera seems able to do all other baseball activities.

With the recent release of Ruben Tejada (and his subsequent signing with the Cardinals), Cabrera's health is more of a concern than it might have been a few weeks ago. Last year, Cabrera started 131 games at shortstop for the Rays, and looked to pick up most of the playing time there for the Mets this season. If he does hit the disabled list, Wilmer Flores would probably play shortstop until Cabrera returned from injury. Flores started 96 games at short last year.

In that scenario, Flores would likely be backed up by Matt Reynolds, who was on the Mets' World Series roster as the backup shortstop but never saw game action.