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Mets still unsure who will start fifth game of season vs. Red Sox

Mets pitcher David Peterson delivers a pitch during

Mets pitcher David Peterson delivers a pitch during an intrasquad game at Citi Field on July 20. Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke

BOSTON — If you were wondering about the state of the Mets’ rotation, know this: At the start of the fourth day of the season, they haven’t officially decided who will pitch on the fifth day.

Manager Luis Rojas said the Mets’ probable starter for Tuesday against the Red Sox still is to be decided.

But, as Rojas noted, lefthander David Peterson is with the Mets as part of the club’s two-player taxi squad — extra players they are allowed to bring on a road trip so that they are available on short notice if needed. Lefthanded reliever Daniel Zamora also is on the taxi squad.

Among the Mets’ other options are righthander Erasmo Ramirez, who is not on the taxi squad, and a bullpen game, in which they use as many relievers as necessary.

But Peterson, who turns 25 next month, drew rave reviews through both preseason camps and again Monday. He had a 4.19 ERA with Double-A Binghamton last season but was better in the second half.

“Just great demeanor,” Rojas said. “He presents as that guy that wants to compete, wants to get you out. He’s always searching. He’s always asking questions. I like his pitchability as far as repertoire and also controlling the running game, fielding his position. There’s just a good package there. Great guy to have in the pool, great guy to have in the taxi squad for any strategy that he may come in.”

MLB Pipeline ranks Peterson as the Mets’ No. 10 prospect. He was the Mets’ top draft pick in 2017. If he makes his debut Tuesday, it will come against the team that drafted him in 2014 (28th round), when he opted to go to the University of Oregon.

Extra bases

The Mets recalled righthander Tyler Bashlor, who took the roster spot of Corey Oswalt, who was optioned to the Mets’ alternate training site Sunday night  . . . Yoenis Cespedes was out of the lineup to rest after starting all three games in the season-opening series. “It’s the first time he’s played three in a row even from the DH spot,” Rojas said. “And then the bus trip to here.” . . . Rojas put Pete Alonso at first base and Dominic Smith, a better defender, at DH. He said he considered doing it the other way around but did not . . .Rojas said he didn’t know when Jed Lowrie would be getting a second opinion on his mysterious left knee pain.

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