PHILADELPHIA — Jacob deGrom’s return to the starting rotation will come on Sunday against the Braves, Mets manager Terry Collins announced on Tuesday.
DeGrom has not pitched since April 8, when he departed with tightness in his right lat muscle. But the reason for his extended absence was the health of his newborn son, Jaxon, who had experienced complications, but was released from the hospital on Monday.
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In preparation for his return, deGrom threw 71 pitches in a simulated game at the team’s complex in Florida on Tuesday.
Matt Harvey and Steven Matz will pitch on regular rest on Friday and Saturday respectively, with deGrom pitching the series finale against the Braves on Sunday.
With the righthander sliding back in the rotation, the Mets have built in extra rest for some of their starters.
When Noah Syndergaard pitches in Monday’s series opener against the Reds at Citi Field, it will be on two extra days’ rest. Veteran righty Bartolo Colon follows on Tuesday, also with two days of additional rest.
Entering play on Tuesday, closer Jeurys Familia has pitched seven times in the Mets’ first 12 games. Don’t expect that pace to slow down.
“We don’t like to give him too many off because he’s a guy — and he’d be happy to tell you — he needs to pitch to be effective,” Collins said. “You saw [last Tuesday against Marlins], his fastball’s just not sinking. There’s too many good swings on it.”
Indeed, after he was rested for two days, Familia allowed a run on two hits in an inning of work. He entered the game even though it was a non-save situation.
“We’ve got to get the sinker back,” Collins said. “And the only way to do that is to get him in some games.”
Back in action
Catcher Travis d’Arnaud returned to the starting lineup for the first time since Saturday. He was forced from that game after he was struck by a fastball on the left elbow.