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02/09/10 3:45 PM ET

Mets add Pridie to outfield mix

Versatile speedster claimed off waivers from Twins

NEW YORK -- The Mets claimed Jason Pridie off waivers from the Twins on Tuesday, adding him to a growing outfield mix.

Pridie, 26, hit .265 with nine home runs and 25 stolen bases in 121 games for Triple-A Rochester last season. He appeared in one game as a pinch-runner for the Twins, who exposed him to make room on their 40-man roster for free-agent acquisition Orlando Hudson.

Pridie was part of the trade that sent Matt Garza to Tampa Bay and Delmon Young to Minnesota two offseasons ago.

Capable of playing all three outfield positions, Pridie will battle Chris Carter, Nick Evans and top prospect Fernando Martinez for the fifth outfielder's job out of camp. Whoever makes the team will presumably have a job only until starting center fielder Carlos Beltran recovers from right knee surgery.

Angel Pagan is the favorite to win the starting job in center field in Beltran's absence. Gary Matthews Jr., who was acquired from the Angels, is likely to make the team as a fourth outfielder.

To make room on the 40-man roster for Pridie, the Mets designated right-handed pitcher Jack Egbert for assignment. Egbert did not appear in a game for the Mets last season.

Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.