Jay Bruce was scratched from Sunday afternoon’s lineup due to a tight right hip. Bruce said that he thinks the tightness was from him taking some reps at first base. He will now miss a few days due to the stiffness. 

Bruce told Mike Puma of the NY Post, “Honestly, I think it has to do with taking found balls at first, just being in a different position, you are so engaged, and my hip flexor just flared up a little bit. Ot’s not anything alarming.”

The Mets made a hike to Lakeland today to take on the Detroit Tigers. Bruce did not travel with the team so he has today and tomorrow, a scheduled day off, to rest up. Mets manager Terry Collins said the earliest Bruce could return to the lineup is Wednesday.

Bruce was taking reps at fist because the Mets see him as a potential back up option in case fragile starting first baseman Lucas Duda suffers an injury. Duda missed most of last season with a stress fracture in his back.

Bruce is hitting .214 with 1 home run and 6 RBI’s this spring. He struggled last season after the Mets traded for him at the deadline. In 50 games, he hit .219 with 6 home runs and 33 RBI’s. If Bruce could turn things around and prove all the doubters wrong, he could be a huge boost to this Mets offense.