On-Base Perception

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Could Murphy, Marcum duck DL stint?

New York Mets Daniel Murphy scores in the

New York Mets Daniel Murphy scores in the fourth inning against the Atlanta Braves. (September 9, 2012) (Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke)

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- Here's a changeup. The Mets got some good news on the injury front. We'll have more in a bit but here are the basics:

-- Second baseman Daniel Murphy (strained right intercostal) will play in a Grapefruit League game on Thursday so long as he reports to the complex with no issues. Murphy hasn't played in a big league game all spring but he has progressed rapidly since suffering a setback a few weeks ago.

-- Righthander Shaun Marcum believes he can avoid starting the season on the disabled list. According to manager Terry Collins, Marcum could pitch in a simulated game in Florida on Monday or Tuesday. If all goes well, Marcum could slot right back into the rotation since the Mets only need four pitchers the first time through. Marcum has been sidelined with a shoulder impingement and neck discomfort.

Of course, the Mets could pursue a less risky course and start Marcum on the DL to free up a roster spot. He would be eligible to make his first start on April 7.

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