New York Mets send Steven Matz home with an illness

Andres Chavez
Simeon Woods-Richardson
Mar 23, 2019; Lake Buena Vista, FL, USA; A view of the Grapefruit League logo on the hat of New York Mets second baseman Robinson Cano (24) prior to the game against the Atlanta Braves at Champion Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

New York Mets‘ left-hander Steven Matz keeps making the news over the last few hours. A day after a report from the New York Post saying that the Yankees have asked about him amid their injury crisis, the Queens’ squad sent him home with an illness.

According to David Lennon, the southpaw left the Mets’ camp on Tuesday with an undisclosed illness. He was going to throw a bullpen session, which was skipped as a result of this health-related bump.

However, the Mets still plan to have him start Friday’s game, which is his scheduled day. That could change if his health doesn’t cooperate, but it doesn’t seem like it is a big deal. He should be back out there soon.

The Mets have a desirable trade piece in Matz

Matz, who had a fine season in 2019, is said to be a target for the New York Yankees. They have a surplus of batters and some exciting prospects, so they have the resources to swing a deal. The arbitration-eligible Matz wouldn’t come cheap, though.

Last season, Matz had a 4.21 ERA with a 4.60 FIP in 160.1 innings. He struck out 8.59 hitters per nine innings, with a 2.92 BB/9 mark. Since the Fangraphs’ version of WAR is dictated by FIP, his 1.6 doesn’t seem so high, but he was a solid starter for the Mets as they mounted a postseason rally that ultimately fell short.

The primary issue remains how little time the two teams have to hammer out a deal. The Mets won’t certainly give Matz away, much less to the New York Yankees, especially this close to the start of the regular season.

For now, Matz remains a member of the New York Mets, and odds are he will stay that way. While this latest health-related setback may be somewhat concerning, it doesn’t sound like a big issue.

The Mets currently have six capable rotation pieces in Jacob deGrom, Noah Syndergaard, Marcus Stroman, Rick Porcello, Michael Wacha and Matz.