CHICAGO -- In his continuing quest to try to win while growing the Mets' young talent, Terry Collins Wednesday sat slumping Kirk Nieuwenhuis against a righthander.
Nieuwenhuis, who has three hits in his last 26 at-bats and is hitting .277, is going to spend a few days working with hitting coach Dave Hudgens on keeping his head on the ball -- and a few other things.
"He's really struggling," Collins said. "I try to make sure that we don't get some of these young players in a deep pit where they all of a sudden start questioning whether they belong here or not. I just want him to work with Dave a little bit and get this thing fixed, because we need him. When he's playing, when he's swinging the bat like he can, it's a huge part of our team . . . When he looked at some video this morning, he's just not seeing the ball. And when you don't see it, it's tough to hit it."
Andres Torres started in center and went 1-for-5. He walked leading off the game, stole second, moved to third on a grounder to second and scored on David Wright's sacrifice fly, giving the Mets a run without a hit.
Happy for Cappy
The Mets will face probable NL All-Star Chris Capuano at Dodger Stadium Thursday night. Capuano, who is 9-2, went 11-12 for the Mets last season. The Mets declined to offer him a contract after the season and he signed with the Dodgers for two years and $10 million.
"I'm really, really happy for him," Collins said. "He's a terrific person."
Indians claim Rottino
Outfielder/infielder Vinny Rottino was claimed off waivers by the Indians, who designated former Mets pitcher Chris Schwinden for assignment to make room on the roster. Collins said the loss of the versatile Rottino "stings."