NEW YORK (AP) -The Mets placed catcher Paul Lo Duca on the 15-day disabled list Sunday because of a strained right hamstring.
Lo Duca hurt his hamstring earlier this month and missed six games. He aggravated the injury Saturday night after hitting a grounder to Marlins pitcher Scott Olsen in the fourth inning. Olsen ran toward Lo Duca to tag him out, and the veteran catcher stopped short and pulled up with a limp.
Lo Duca stayed in the game, and grounded into a force out in the sixth. He was replaced during a pitching change in the top of the seventh by Ramon Castro.
The move was announced Saturday night, and Lo Duca didn't speak to the media. General manager Omar Minaya said Saturday night that Lo Duca wasn't thrilled with the decision. On Sunday, Lo Duca was in the clubhouse dressed in jeans and a T-shirt, and said he was going to have an MRI exam later in the day.
``It's frustrating because I want to play,'' Lo Duca said. ``I probably could play through it, but they don't want me to re-injure it, and that's that.''
Lo Duca said when he woke up this morning his hamstring felt ``absolutely great.''
When asked if he wished the team had waited before making the decision, a sullen Lo Duca abruptly ended the interview.
``Come on, don't start nothing,'' he said.
Manager Willie Randolph said it was the right decision not to wait and see how Lo Duca felt.
``We did that just recently, and it didn't work out. It obviously didn't heal. Anytime you re-injure your hamstring, it's the right thing. Put him on the DL and give him some time.''
Mike DiFelice was called up from Triple-A New Orleans to replace Lo Duca, who was hitting .267 with five homers and 32 RBIs.
Castro will get most of the playing time at catcher in Lo Duca's absence. A nine-year veteran who spent his first six years with the Marlins, Castro has a career-high nine homers in 130 at-bats this season and is hitting .285.
``Ramon is here, he's playing well, he'll do a fine job,'' Lo Duca said. ``I'm not worried about that.''
The Mets entered their series finale against the Marlins on Sunday with a 2 1/2-game lead on the Atlanta Braves and three games ahead of Philadelphia in the NL East.
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