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Notes: Beltran eyeing return
Outfielder works out, could be back with Mets by week's end
NEW YORK -- The Mets' Carlos Beltran is inching closer to a return to center field.
Beltran worked out Tuesday for the first time since straining his left oblique, and he could be ready to come off the disabled list by week's end. He ran, played catch and hit for the first time since the injury, and -- for the most part -- felt normal.
"Running and playing catch was fine," Beltran said. "But we weren't going crazy out there. It's the first day since I got hurt that I'm capable of doing work."
The problem was hitting. Beltran said he felt about 75 percent swinging from the left side, but only 50 percent from the right side after a session of soft toss. He'll take batting practice for the first time Wednesday, and plans on taking hacks from both sides of the plate.
He's also eager to rejoin the team as soon as he can -- even if that means joining at less than 100 percent.
"I don't think anyone here feels 100 percent," Beltran said. "The way I feel today, I feel like I've gained confidence for [Wednesday] to go out again and do a little bit more."
Beltran didn't make the recent road trip to Milwaukee and Chicago, staying home to heal. And while it has helped to heal him physically, it may have also managed to fracture his psyche. He couldn't be there when Tom Glavine won his 300th game, and he couldn't be there as the Mets played some of their best ball of the season.
Beltran couldn't, in fact, do much of anything.
"Sitting home without doing anything, I get crazy," Beltran said. "I get bored. The last few days I've had a bat in my room. I've been swinging at home, trying to get a feel for something, trying to feel better. Watching those games, watching Glavine get to 300, it would have been a great experience for me."
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