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Jay Bruce leaves Mets game with back tightness

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The right fielder left the team’s Tuesday night game early.

MLB: San Diego Padres at New York Mets Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

Jay Bruce left the Mets’ game against the Padres this evening early with what the team announced as back tightness. He had made an awkward attempt at catching a fly ball against the right field fence shortly before he was removed from the game, though it’s not entirely clear whether or not that caused the back issue.

Bruce was outstanding for the Mets in April as he hit .292/.370/.584 with seven home runs and a 152 wRC+. But coming into tonight’s game, he had struggled in May. Even though he had four home runs in the month, he was sitting on a .191/.282/.426 line and an 88 wRC+.

Perhaps the Mets removed Bruce from the game to play it safe since the team had a five-run lead at the time he was taken out of the game, but in the event that he misses any time, the Mets’ best depth is in the outfield. So long as Yoenis Cespedes returns in a few days—which isn’t a guarantee but sounds like the plan—the team can roll out a more than respectable outfield even if Bruce misses a little time. After a brutal month of April, Curtis Granderson had a 120 wRC+ in May coming into this game, which is encouraging moving forward.