March 4, 2024

New York Mets ace Jacob deGrom began his first minor league rehab Sunday since suffering a pressure reaction in his right shoulder in spring training. DeGrom was scheduled to play a 25-court or two against Jupiter Hammerheads (Marlins) at Clover Park in Port St. Lucie, Florida.

“He has fulfilled every standard, and we are happy with that,” “Mets manager Buck Showalter told on Saturday. “We’ll see how he does on Sunday, and we’ll see if there are any adjustments to our schedule that need to be made. We know where that can take us.”

Performance was definitely not an issue on Saturday as deGrom faced six hitters, hitting five and hitting the other with the wrong pitch. He needed 24 shots to skip 1 2/3 runs, 18 of which were hits. He flashed the radar gun, trailing 100 mph six times and averaging 99 mph with his four stitches. He was also effective with his cutter, throwing it eight times and getting five flips (all misses). It should be noted, of course, that this was against Class A hitters who were not accustomed to seeing degroom-caliber pitchers.

Sunday’s outing kicks off DeGrom’s 30-Day Minor League Rehab Hour. The Mets can activate it at any time during those 30 days, but the last one that can be activated is August 1 (except for a setback). This is the day before the trading deadline, so the Mets will either put the Ace back in the fold, or they will know they need to complete the cast before the deadline.

Max Scherzer has missed nearly seven weeks due to a tilt injury and He will be joining the rotation on Tuesday. The Mets only have three shooters on the active roster at the moment. Here is the team turnover depth chart:

  1. RHP Jacob deGrom (on a minor league rehab assignment)
  2. RHP Max Scherzer (on the infected list will be activated Tuesday)
  3. RHP Chris Bassitt (on COVID list)
  4. RHP Taylor Miguel (On the list of people with shoulder strain for 60 days)
  5. RHP Taijuan Walker
  6. RHB Carlos Carrasco
  7. RHP Trevor Williams
  8. LHP David Peterson (on the paternity list)

DeGrom turned 34 last month and hasn’t played in an MLB game in nearly a calendar year now. His last major league appearance was last July 7, when he carried the Milwaukee Brewers twice in seven rounds. He was put on the casualty list shortly after he had a forearm problem. When he went to camp this spring, he said the forearm was “Very cool, well done. “

Prior to last year’s injury, Degrom was going through a dynamic season, hitting a 1.08 ERA with 146 strokes in 15 starts and 92 runs. He said he would opt out from his final year and have $30.5 million left on his contract after the season. Given how Mets gave Scherzer three years and $130 million at the age of 37, DeGrom is poised to cash in well even with this injury.

Clover Park in Part St. Lucie is the Mets spring training home where deGrom has done most of the rehab work. He began his throwing program in May, after a series of MRIs showed good recovery progress in his shoulder.

The Mets have a 49-30 record, and their NL East was reduced from 10 games 1/2 on June 1 to just 3 games on July 4 on the Braves.

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