The Mets get a veteran reliever back from injury

MLB: Pittsburgh Pirates at New York Mets
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The Mets 2024 season has been difficult. The blue and orange entered the campaign with wild card expectations, but instead, they are sitting at 24-35 and are preparing to trade away a good chunk of the roster for the second year in a row at the trade deadline.

A significant reason for the Mets’ struggles has been their inability to stay healthy.

Last week alone, the blue and orange had to place star closer Edwin Díaz on the injured list due to a right shoulder impingement, star sluggers Pete Alonso and Francisco Lindor had to leave games early after being struck by pitches, and Brooks Raley underwent season-ending elbow surgery.

However, on Sunday, the Mets didn’t lose a player to injury; they got one back.

Drew Smith returns to the Mets from injury

Before Sunday’s 5-4 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks, the Mets announced they had reinstated reliever Drew Smith from the 15-day injured list.

MLB: Pittsburgh Pirates at New York Mets
Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Smith had been recovering from right shoulder inflammation since April 23 and made five one-inning relief appearances during a rehab assignment from May 8 to May 31.

The Texas native has pitched 10 innings across 10 appearances for the Mets this season to a 2.70 ERA with a 1.700 WHIP and 11 strikeouts while also picking up one save.

Despite the 30-year-old being healthy enough to return to the roster, the blue and orange plan is to exercise caution with him.

“We have to be careful and really make sure that we put him in a situation where we’re not putting him at risk,” Mets manager Carlos Mendoza said. “We feel comfortable where he’s at physically, but he’s a big part of that bullpen. Obviously, we missed him the past few weeks.”

SNY

Who is Smith replacing

Losing their roster spot to Smith is reliever Josh Walker.

Walker has pitched 12.1 innings across 10 appearances to a 5.11 ERA with a 1.541 WHIP and 11 strikeouts.

The 29-year-old has performed better than his numbers indicate and should get another shot in the big leagues if another reliever falters, gets traded or is injured.

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