ST. LOUIS – Mets ace and reigning National League Cy Young Award winner Jacob deGrom will return to New York with the team on Sunday night, and then undergo an MRI exam on his elbow on Monday. General manager Brodie Van Wagenen said the club will place the right-hander on the injured list, retroactive to last Tuesday, allowing deGrom to return on April 26.
Van Wagenen said the decision to rest deGrom, who felt "mild soreness in his throwing arm over the last 24 hours," was made with "an abundance of caution," and that the club will make a corresponding roster move before Saturday's game. Van Wagenen added that deGrom "dealt with sickness over the last week and hasn't been able to conduct his normal routine between starts."
Manager Mickey Callaway told reporters the news before Friday night's game against the Cardinals in St. Louis. deGrom first felt the discomfort after a game of catch during the team’s off-day on Thursday.
“He’s been under the weather, his elbow is a little barking, we’re going to get him back to New York, have him checked out, get an MRI and go from there,” the skipper said.
deGrom, who underwent Tommy John surgery in 2010, was scheduled to start Saturday after having his outing originally pushed back a day due to his illness, but he no longer will take the mound against the Cardinals.
“He’s just a little tender in the elbow,” Callaway said. "We don’t know if it’s just from general fatigue, so we’re being overly cautious at this point and making sure we take care of him. We’ve got 90% of the season left, and we feel no reason to really push him too much at this point.”
The Mets reached a five-year, $137.5 million extension shortly before Opening Day with the 30-year-old deGrom, who made history earlier this season, tying the record for most consecutive quality starts (26) that was previously held by Bob Gibson.
After beginning this season with two scoreless outings, deGrom has given up nine runs on 13 hits (five homers) with 12 strikeouts and five walks in nine innings over his past two starts.
A ninth-round Draft pick in 2010, deGrom burst onto the scene and was the 2014 NL Rookie of the Year Award winner, adding three postseason wins the following October. Since that time, he has shorn his once-trademark long hair and blossomed into one of the most successful pitchers in franchise history.
Callaway said the team will wait until after Friday's game to figure out a starter for Saturday. He ruled out moving up Noah Syndergaard, who is expected to start on Sunday.