Tejada ready to step in at SS in Asdrubal's absence

Mets' new shortstop sustains knee strain, may miss Opening Day

Tejada ready to step in at SS in Asdrubal's absence

VIERA, Fla. -- Just as newly acquired shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera reported to New York for treatment of his strained left patella tendon, fellow Mets shortstop Ruben Tejada reported his left leg has healed nicely.

"I don't feel any pain or nothing," Tejada said after playing in Friday's 9-5 loss to the Nationals.

Asdrubal out two weeks with strain in knee tendon

Cabrera will receive a plasma-rich platelet injection to aid his recovery, after an injury while running between first and second knocked him out of Thursday's game against the Cardinals. This left knee issue should keep Cabrera from baseball-related activities for about two weeks and might threaten his readiness for Opening Day, general manager Sandy Alderson said.

As a result, Tejada, who has hit .255 in six seasons for the Mets, could be the starting shortstop if Cabrera is not recovered by by April 3. In Thursday's game, Tejada hit his first homer of Spring Training.

"If they give me the opportunity, I will be ready to play, like every time," said Tejada after a 1-for-2 performance Friday. "You just get ready; you never know what happens."

Tejada has played the majority of his innings at shortstop since 2012, although he played 98 innings at second base and 156 1/3 innings at third base last season.

Alderson signed Cabrera to a two-year, $18.5 million deal on Dec. 11, with visions of making him the everyday shortstop after he hit .265 with 15 home runs in 143 games for the Rays last season. The other shortstop on the Mets' 40-man roster is Matt Reynolds, who has not made his MLB debut. Reynolds spent most of 2014 and '15 with Triple-A Las Vegas.

With just two games in the first five days of New York's schedule -- both at Kansas City -- the Mets could enter the season with Cabrera on the active roster, even if he's at the tail end of his recovery.

Alderson did not say what Cabrera's return would mean in terms of the fate of Tejada, who has been the subject of trade and cut speculation.

Although Wilmer Flores started at third base Friday, manager Terry Collins said Flores could be a candidate to replace Cabrera at shortstop, as well.

Mets cut six
The Mets announced six cuts Friday to trim their Spring Training roster to 52 players.

Catcher Raywilly Gomez joined pitchers Chasen Bradford and Paul Sewald as non-roster invitees reassigned to Minor League camp. The Mets also optioned three pitchers to Minors camp: Dario Alvarez, Rafael Montero and Akeel Morris.

Zak Kerr is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.