Battling tight calf and back issues, Mets closer plans to keep pitching
PHILADELPHIA -- Mets closer Jenrry Mejia has been dealing with tightness in his right calf, but after Sunday afternoon's 7-6 loss to the Phillies, he revealed a litany of other ailments that have also been plaguing him -- including a hernia.
"In the beginning of the season, everything is good, normal," Mejia said. "Now, I've got my leg, thigh, my back, little bit of a hernia. I want to keep pitching."
Mejia, who has known about the hernia for three weeks, indicated that an operation would be necessary after the season.
"Doctors say if it bothers me too much to let him fix it, but I don't want to let him now because I want to keep pitching," Mejia said.
"They gave me some pills and some medication. If I don't feel normal, too much pain, they going to make an operation. But I want to keep pitching. I want to take some pills and keep pitching. I think I can keep going. I'm ready to go."
The 24-year-old blew his third save opportunity Sunday, but didn't attribute the subpar performance to his injuries.
"There's no excuse," Mejia said.
Considering Mejia's recent struggles -- he's surrendered four earned runs in 3 2/3 innings over his last four appearances -- Mets manager Terry Collins was asked if he thinks his young closer has hit a wall.
"That's a thought we've talked about," Collins said. "Again, one of the things that we've discussed, I discussed with Jake deGrom today. And that is the ability to learn how to get through six months. So with that comes how to take care of yourself a little bit better and how to cut back on certain things."
In 42 appearances, Mejia has pitched 74 innings. Last year, elbow surgery limited him to just 52 innings between the Majors and Minors.
Erik Bacharach is an associate reporter for MLB.com.