Mets Place Jacob deGrom on Injured List With Sore Elbow

Jacob deGrom, the reigning National League Cy Young Award winner, was scheduled to start for the Mets against the Cardinals in St. Louis on Saturday, but his plans have been rerouted.

DeGrom experienced soreness in his right elbow on Thursday, and on Friday General Manager Brodie Van Wagenen announced that deGrom would undergo a magnetic resonance imaging examination in New York on Monday. Manager Mickey Callaway initially told reporters that deGrom would leave the team and return to New York on Friday, but he will stay in St. Louis through the end of the series on Sunday.

DeGrom was placed on the injured list retroactive to April 16. He would be available to return and pitch on April 26, when the team starts a series against the Milwaukee Brewers.

In a statement, Van Wagenen said that deGrom’s arm “felt significantly better following treatment with our health and performance staff today” and that the test was being done “in the abundance of caution.”

In 2010, deGrom had Tommy John surgery to repair a torn ligament in his right elbow, and he also had an operation to repair nerve damage in his right elbow in 2016.

Before Friday night’s 5-4 win in St. Louis, Manager Mickey Callaway told reporters that deGrom’s right elbow was “barking” after the ace right-hander played catch on the team’s off day.

“We’re not sure exactly what it is, so we want to get it checked out,” Callaway said. “We don’t know if it’s just from general fatigue. So we’re being overly cautious at this point. We have 90 percent of the season left and feel no reason to push him too much at this point.”

DeGrom’s scheduled start had already been moved back a day because he was said to be battling strep throat. In his normal routine, deGrom throws off the mound twice in between starts.

Jason Vargas, typically the Mets’ fifth starter, limited the Cardinals to one run in four innings Friday night before five relievers were called upon to finish the Cardinals. Closer Edwin Diaz recorded his seventh save. The Mets did not immediately announce who would start in place of deGrom on Saturday.

DeGrom, 30, signed a five-year contract extension worth $137.5 million two days before the season opener, and he began his season with 13 scoreless innings while picking up a win in each of his first two outings. In the second start, he threw for a career-high 14 strikeouts and hit a home run against the Miami Marlins.

“That was probably the best I’ve felt in a long time,” deGrom said of his pitching after that game. “I felt smooth.”

He has struggled to locate his pitches since. DeGrom, who posted a 1.70 earned run average last year, allowed six earned runs against the Minnesota Twins at Citi Field in his third start and then gave up three earned runs in Atlanta last weekend.

“It’s baseball,” deGrom said after the Minnesota loss. “This game will humble you real quick.”

He is 2-2 on the season with an E.R.A. of 3.68. The Mets were 10-8 going into Friday’s game, and starting pitching has been among their primary issues. Syndergaard is 1-1 with an E.R.A. of 5.63. Zack Wheeler walked seven Washington Nationals in one outing and surrendered two home runs in losing to the Phillies on Wednesday. Steven Matz failed to record an out in his last start, when he gave up six earned runs and was pulled from the game after throwing 31 pitches to eight batters.

“Rough night,” Callaway said then. “These are rough ones.”

On Friday, it only got rougher for the Mets as their ace had no clear answers about when he would throw another pitch.

 

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