Jacob deGrom is "ready to roll" Sunday against the Diamondbacks, Mets acting general manager Zack Scott said, a return to action after he missed his previous start due to right lat inflammation.
"Any time you’re talking about someone that special, it’s a relief whenever there is any kind of potential health issue [that doesn't turn out to be very significant]," Scott said Saturday afternoon. "As we did the due diligence and work on it, it wasn’t something that anyone thought was a major issue."
If deGrom is his normal elite self, his return also could be a welcome reprieve for Mets relievers, who have had a busy week, particularly during what amounted to back-to-back bullpen games Friday and Saturday.
Minor physical issues that have occasionally caused deGrom to miss a start have become something of a routine occurrence for the 33-year-old two-time NL Cy Young Award winner. In the past year, he has dealt with a tight back, a blister, a tight neck and a spasming right hamstring. None required so much as a trip to the injured list, which was the case again this time.
"Definitely I’m relieved," Scott said.
The Mets expect Noah Syndergaard (Tommy John surgery) and Seth Lugo (right elbow bone-chip surgery) to go on minor-league rehabilitation assignments "in a week or so," Scott said.
Syndergaard’s assignment should last longer; he is due back in June, more than 14 months after his operation.
Lugo, a reliever who had a less serious injury, likely will need less in-game action. Team officials figure he’ll be back by late May.
"That’s a good next step once they start doing that," Scott said.
Syndergaard, Michael Conforto and Marcus Stroman are due to be free agents after this season. Lugo, Brandon Nimmo, Edwin Diaz and (potentially) deGrom could hit the open market after the 2022 season.
For now, though, no Mets are close to signing extensions, according to the acting GM.
"There's been no movement on anything contract-wise for anyone," Scott said.
Wait, he’s bunting?
A loose end from Friday night: Why did Francisco Lindor bunt in the ninth inning, with the potential winning run on first base and nobody out?
Manager Luis Rojas, noting that Lindor came to him in the dugout afterward to explain, said Lindor said he was trying to bunt for a hit.
"I told him, ‘I’d rather have you swing in that situation. I think you’re looking better and better the last two games,’" said Rojas, who also expressed during spring training that he does not want Lindor, the No. 2 hitter, to bunt. "But you gotta respect when a guy is trying to play for his team, which was the intent in that moment. I didn’t say anything to him other than that. Just be open-minded. Keep doing the things that you think are going to put the team in a position to win. But I expressed that I would rather have him swing in that situation."
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