Spring training notes

Mets' Hefner injured

Adam Wainwright got the final tuneup he was hoping for while Jeremy Hefner had to make an abrupt exit.

Wainwright, set to start on opening day for St. Louis, pitched six strong innings as the Cardinals topped the New York Mets 11-4 on Tuesday.

Mets starter Jeremy Hefner received a scare in the top of the fourth when he was hit on his pitching elbow by a one-hopper off the bat of Carlos Beltran.

Hefner immediately left the game with a bruised right elbow. X-rays were negative and he was listed as day-to-day. Hefner had given up two runs and five hits in the first three innings.

Mets manager Terry Collins said Hefner will be the team's No. 4 starter behind Jonathon Niese, Matt Harvey and Dillon Gee, and that the final spot is a question mark.

"Well, we've got to figure out not only who the fifth starter is and where do we set him up, where is he going to fit," Collins said. "We're going to go with four guys in the first five days because we don't need a fifth starter until (April) 7th, so we have to figure out where he fits best and who he is."

Lucas Duda drove in all four Mets runs with a homer, double and single.

Also, third baseman David Wright (strained intercostal muscle) played in his first minor league game since returning from the World Baseball Classic. He went 1 for 5 and scored a run against Cardinals' Triple-A and Double-A pitchers.

Betemit out 6-8 weeks

Baltimore infielder Wilson Betemit estimates he'll be out for six to eight weeks because of a tear in his right knee, but he won't need surgery.

Betemit was hurt Monday while running the bases in an exhibition game and had an MRI. He was diagnosed with a tear of the posterior cruciate ligament.

The 31-year-old Betemit hit .261 with 12 home runs and 40 RBI last season with Baltimore. He played third base, first base and the outfield, and also was a designated hitter.

Lowe earns job with Texas

Derek Lowe has earned a job with the Texas Rangers and will start the season in the bullpen.

Rangers manager Ron Washington said the 39-year-old right-hander will be a long reliever and spot starter.

Lowe agreed March 6 to a minor league contract and will get a one-year deal that pays him $1.25 million in the major leagues and $150,000 in the minors.

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