WASHINGTON (AP) -Nationals catcher Paul Lo Duca was scheduled to have surgery on his left knee Monday to repair what his agent called a minor meniscus tear.
Lo Duca will need ``an estimated 3-6 weeks for full recovery,'' his agent, Andrew Mongelluzzi, wrote in an e-mail to The Associated Press on Sunday.
Washington's pitchers and catchers are scheduled to report to spring training in Viera, Fla., on Feb. 15, which is about 2 1/2 weeks away.
Lo Duca, who signed a $5 million, one-year deal as a free agent this offseason, hurt himself during a workout last week and then had an MRI, the Nationals had announced on Friday. Asked that day if he could comment on the severity of the injury, Nationals general manager Jim Bowden wrote in an e-mail, ``We won't know until test results are back.''
Bowden did not immediately respond to a request for comment Sunday, and a team spokesman said he couldn't comment.
Lo Duca hit .272 with nine homers and 54 RBIs for the Mets last season, his second in New York. Washington signed him in December, less than two weeks after trading veteran catcher Brian Schneider to the Mets.
Lo Duca, who will turn 36 in April, and Nationals manager Manny Acta were in New York together in 2006, when Acta was the Mets third-base coach.
In 10 major league seasons with the Dodgers, Marlins and Mets, Lo Duca has batted .288 with 80 homers and 466 RBIs. He was a four-time All-Star from 2003-06.
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