On-Base Perception

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Marcum sent to doctor, scratched from start

Mets' Shaun Marcum delivers a pitch during a

Mets' Shaun Marcum delivers a pitch during a spring training workout at Tradition Field. (Feb. 15, 2013) (Credit: Newsday/Alejandra Villa)

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- A few updates from Mets camp (translation: the daily injury report).

-- In Shaun Marcum's injury-plagued pitching career, he has dealt with various maladies in his back, leg, knee, hip, finger, elbow and shoulder. But until his bullpen session yesterday, he had never been derailed by a pain in the neck. The 31-year-old Marcum has been sent to a doctor and has been scratched from his start on Thursday, the club announced on Tuesday morning.

The Mets have doubts about whether Marcum will be ready for Opening Day, according to the Daily News. Meanwhile, pitching coach Dan Warthen told ESPN New York that the organization harbors "legitimate concerns" about the ramifications of Marcum's condition.

Because of off days in the schedule, the Mets won't need a fifth starter immediately, though they'll hav decisions to make if Marcum's absence is extended.

Lefthander Aaron Laffey had been discussed as a possible replacement when Marcum took a cortisone injection last week for an issue in his right shouilder. Collin McHugh could also be in the mix. Both Laffey and McHugh had been sent to the minors. Righthander Jeremy Hefner is already in the rotation for the injured Johan Santan. Meanwhile, righty Jenrry Mejia, considered one of the leading candidates to act as injury insurance, has also been sidelined with elbow tendinitis.

It's possible that the Mets could seek help from the outside. Chris Young's history with the Mets makes him a logical fit if the team decides to add a piece. The righthander has filed paperwork to opt-out of his minor-league deal with the Nationals, so he's available. Stay tuned.

-- Lefty specialist Pedro Feliciano has informed the Mets that he has chosen to remain in the organiation. Instead of opting out of the minor league deal he signed this winter, Feliciano will receive a $100,000 bonus to stay, per rules in the collective bargaining agreement. The Mets told him on Monday that they want him to spend a month in the minors building up strength in his surgically-repaired left shoulder.

-- Outfielder Matt den Dekker will spend the next six weeks in a cast over his fractured right wrist, a team spokesman said on Tuesdsay morning. As den Dekker himself announced on Monday via Twitter, he will not need surgery, which would have required a longer recovery time.

Tags: Shaun Marcum , Dan Warthen , Pedro Feliciano , Matt den Dekker

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