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Mets down to three starters, but Carlos Carrasco might help

Carlos Carrasco of the Brooklyn Cyclones delivers to

Carlos Carrasco of the Brooklyn Cyclones delivers to the plate during the top of the first inning of a New York Penn League game against the Jersey Shore BlueClaws at Maimonides Park in Brooklyn on Thursday. Credit: James Escher

PITTSBURGH — The Mets won’t hurry Carlos Carrasco back to the majors simply because Jacob deGrom is unavailable, manager Luis Rojas said.

Carrasco, still dealing with a torn right hamstring, has made one rehabilitation start, two innings for High-A Brooklyn on Thursday. The Mets have publicly mulled the option of bringing him back before he is fully stretched out, in effect finishing his rehab in the majors.

Rojas said that is not a more attractive option in light of deGrom’s tight right forearm.

"I don’t think we can rush any player’s rehab stint or progression just because this is happening," Rojas said. "I don’t think we just speed up some things. That’s something to wait on how Cookie is and if he’s going to make a next rehab start the next time or if he’s going to come to us. We need to have a discussion."

 

Carrasco, who has yet to pitch for the Mets, is scheduled to pitch again Tuesday. The Mets haven’t said if that will be for Brooklyn, another affiliate or the major-league Mets.

In theory, he could be activated and contribute, say, three innings against the Reds.

Without deGrom and Carrasco — and a bunch of other injured pitchers — the Mets are down to three starters: Taijuan Walker, Marcus Stroman and Tylor Megill.

Walker is scheduled to go Sunday in the series finale against the Pirates. The Mets need starters for Monday and Tuesday, when they take on the Reds in Cincinnati, before they can go back to Stroman on Wednesday.

Jerad Eickhoff is an option. He returned to the Mets just before the All-Star break as a long reliever. But he has tossed just 4 2/3 innings across two appearances since June 28, so he might not be able to provide much length.

The Mets’ possibilities at starter will depend in part on how Carrasco feels during his bullpen session Saturday, Rojas said.

"He’s the one that has to feel comfortable," he said. "Wanting him to come, just being one person like me [saying] we’re in need, is rushing his thing. That’s probably not ideal. We’ll see where he’s at."

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