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Rottino, Valdespin may see time in outfield

Rottino, Valdespin may see time in outfield

Rottino, Valdespin may see time in outfield
NEW YORK -- With Jason Bay being placed on the seven-day concussion list on Saturday, the carousel that was the Mets' outfield is back in motion.

Bay suffered his second career concussion after crashing into the left-field wall in the second inning on Friday. He was replaced by Scott Hairston, who also got the nod in left field on Saturday night.

Before Bay's return, manager Terry Collins routinely juggled outfielders Hairston, Andres Torres, Vinny Rottino and Jordany Valdespin.

"We think our outfield situation -- Rottino can play out there if we need to, Valdespin can play out there if we need to -- we've got some options of some guys who have some versatility," Collins said.

But despite the defensive versatility, struggles against right-handed pitching have Collins in a bind. Both Hairston and Torres have struggled against righties, batting .188 and .160, respectively. Collins stressed the importance of getting the pair going against right-handers, and said his plan is to "mix and match" outfielders on a day-by-day basis.

Hairston belted a two-run home run off Bronson Arroyo on Friday, and despite his struggles against righties, boasts a .320 batting average in June. Improving, he said, stems from keeping things simple at the plate.

"I just try to keep my shoulder in when I face right-handed pitching," Hairston said. "A lot of times, it's that pitch away that's hard to get to, so I just try to keep my shoulder in and focus my attention up the middle instead of trying to think pull. But first and foremost, I'm just trying to make sure I'm picking the ball up well."

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