Mets' Thomas Szapucki out for rest of season, will have surgery to repair nerve issue, source says
The Mets’ starting-pitching depth has taken yet another hit.
Lefthander Thomas Szapucki, a prospect who appeared in one game for the Mets this year, needs season-ending ulnar nerve transposition surgery, a source said. The Mets expect him to be ready for spring training.
The ulnar nerve is responsible for feeling in the ring and pinky fingers, part of the palm and underside of the forearm, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine’s website. Jacob deGrom (2016) and Steven Matz (2017) had this surgery, too. At the time of deGrom’s operation, then-general manager Sandy Alderson said the problem was "not unusual after Tommy John surgery."
This is the latest in a series of arm injuries for the 25-year-old Szapucki, who has been limited to 190 1/3 innings since being drafted in 2015. That includes Tommy John surgery, which wiped out most of his 2017 and all of his 2018 season.
Szapucki was called up to the majors twice this year, pitching in one game, in long relief against Atlanta on June 30. He allowed six runs in 3 2/3 innings. In 10 games with Triple-A Syracuse, he had a 4.10 ERA and 1.68 WHIP. MLB Pipeline has him as the Mets’ No. 10 prospect, which made him their highest-ranked pitcher in the upper minors.
Such an injury underscores the Mets’ decreasing depth in the rotation. In addition to still missing Carlos Carrasco (torn right hamstring) and Noah Syndergaard (Tommy John surgery), plus back-end starters David Peterson (strained right oblique) and Joey Lucchesi (Tommy John surgery), the Mets also have dealt with injuries to several long relievers/backup starters: Robert Gsellman (torn right lat), Sean Reid-Foley (right elbow inflammation), Corey Oswalt (right knee inflammation) and Jordan Yamamoto (right shoulder soreness).
Suozzi’s homecoming: The Mets promoted Joe Suozzi, a Glen Cove native and Chaminade High School alumnus, to High-A Brooklyn. In 30 games with Low-A St. Lucie, he had a .292/.372/.381 slash line and went 13-for-13 in stolen bases. He signed as an undrafted free agent out of Boston College in June 2020.