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Asdrubal Cabrera leaves game with sore left knee

NEW YORK -- Fueled by the hot bats of Asdrubal Cabrera, Yoenis Cespedes and Neil Walker, the Mets have made a drive back into the thick of the postseason race. But on Sunday, before the end of the first inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citi Field, all three had gone down to injury.

Manager Terry Collins said before the game that Cespedes has a tight quadriceps and Walker has a stiff back and that both would be out of the lineup for the contest. Cabrera left the game in the bottom of the first inning with a sore left knee.

All three players have been bothered by these same injuries this season.

Cabrera, the starting shortstop hitting second in the order, bunted for a one-out hit but collided with Phillies first baseman Tommy Joseph and came away holding his left wrist. After being checked out by the team trainer, Cabrera remained in the game. He moved to second on Kelly Johnson's single to right but was moving gingerly and was removed from the game.

Cabrera missed time with a left knee injury earlier this month and returned from the disabled list Aug. 19. He has been tremendous at the plate in nine games since, batting .455 with three homers and nine RBIs.

Cespedes was out earlier this month with his quadriceps injury. He also came off the DL and began a run of torrid hitting. In eight games since his return, he has batted .355 with four home runs and eight RBIs.

"His leg tightened up on him last night," Collins said of Cespedes before Sunday's first pitch. "We thought we should give him a day following a night game, but he's already shown how important he is and we can't afford to blow these guys out, especially at this time with the way we're playing. We're going to give him another day today."

Collins said this was the first time Cespedes, who is batting .295 with 26 homers and 67 RBIs this season, mentioned his quad since returning.

Walker has had back issues and has been doing extra preparation to stay in the lineup. Since July 27, he has hit .440 with seven home runs and 15 RBIs.

Collins said Walker had felt some discomfort in his back when the team was in San Francisco last weekend.

"I talked to him this morning, and he needs a lot of time to get it stretched and loosened up," Collins said, adding that Walker was available to pinch hit.

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