The New York Mets are already down Jacob deGrom, the best pitcher in baseball, as he recently started his throwing program following a stress reaction on his right scapula. Now, however, their other ace went down, too: Max Scherzer will miss the next 6-8 weeks as he recovers from a “moderate to high-grade internal oblique strain.”
Scherzer suffered the injury in the Mets’ game against the St. Louis Cardinals on Wednesday. He threw a pitch and immediately called in the trainer, knowing that he wouldn’t be able to continue pitching.
He underwent an MRI on Thursday morning, and the results showed the injury. He also has some blisters, but the longer absence will be related to his oblique strain.
Who will return to the Mets’ rotation first?
deGrom and Scherzer are making $78.8 million combined this season, and now, the Mets will be forced to be without them for weeks. Now, the question will be who returns first: deGrom needs about a spring training worth of reps, bullpens, and minor league games, so his return will likely be delayed into July, around the All-Star break.
Additionally, given the fact he is 37 years old, the Mets will likely be careful with Scherzer and have him return closer to the eight-week timetable than the six-week one.
“It definitely sucks, but it’s more so just next man up,” said No. 3 starter Chris Bassitt, who is now the Mets’ de facto ace. “We have the depth to withstand this. This is why I think the front office … brought me in, and brought Max in to really shore up the starters. When things happen — because things happen to everybody — we’re able to still win games. We didn’t lose him for the year, so it is what it is.”
The Mets’ pitching depth will be tested in the next few weeks, and names such as Bassitt, Carlos Carrasco, Tylor Megill, David Peterson, and Trevor Williams will have step up.