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07/11/08 7:20 PM ET

Mets recall catcher Cancel

Backstop returns to big club; outfielder Aguila sent to Triple-A

NEW YORK -- The Mets recalled catcher Robinson Cancel for Friday's game against the Rockies, sending outfielder Chris Aguila back down to Triple-A New Orleans.

In four plate appearances with the Mets this season, Cancel is batting .250 and has two RBIs. Manager Jerry Manuel said he liked having the righty batter available for pinch-hitting situations because it gives him the freedom to pinch-run for other players in earlier innings.

"The way I move our catchers around -- pinch-hit for them -- it gives me a little bit more flexibility in that area," Manuel said. "I can now maybe pinch-run for a guy as early as the seventh inning, rather than wait until the eighth or the ninth, depending on who they have in the bullpen and all those different things."

Cancel has already pinch-hit in a pressure situation for the Mets this season, breaking a sixth-inning tie with a two-run single in a 4-2 win over the Rangers in the second game of a June 15 doubleheader. The drive plated Cancel's first RBIs since 1999.

Aguila played in eight games for the Mets this season, hitting .167 without an RBI, and Manuel said he could spare an outfielder on his bench with the current production of Fernando Tatis and the presence of recent callup Nick Evans.

Before Friday's game, Tatis was batting .500 in the month of July (11-for-22) with three home runs, three doubles and eight RBIs.

"I was thinking, the way Tatis is swinging the bat, I won't need that right-handed-hitting outfielder for a while," Manuel said. "I think we kind of have that in Evans, as well."

Jon Blau is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.