LEADING OFF: deGrom, Scherzer get checked after early exits
A look at what’s happening around the majors on Saturday:
No doubt every Mets fans shuddered when they heard the news that star pitcher Jacob deGrom was pulled from his latest start with an elbow injury.
But the two-time NL Cy Young Award winner says not to fret.
“My level of concern is not too high,” deGrom said Friday night.
DeGrom exited with right flexor tendinitis. He tore the ligament in his pitching elbow as a minor leaguer and needed Tommy John surgery in 2010 and said “this didn’t feel anything like that.”
“Whenever you say elbow anything for a pitcher, everyone gets nervous about that,” deGrom said. “But like I said, I do a lot of ligament tests on my own, and doing those, knowing what those feel like, it’s a totally different spot.”
DeGrom doesn’t plan to seek an MRI or other imaging, and he expects to proceed with his normal between-start routine and pitch next time his rotation spot comes up.
DeGrom pitched six shutout innings of one-hit ball and struck out 10 in a 3-2 win over San Diego. He’s thrown 22 straight scoreless innings and his 0.56 ERA is the lowest ever by a pitcher through 10 starts, just ahead of Juan Marichal’s 0.59 in 1966.
DeGrom also hit a two-run single and is batting .400 this season. He has five RBIs, and has allowed just four earned runs.
The Nationals will see how Max Scherzer is feeling, a day after he exited a start against San Francisco in which he threw just 12 pitches.
The three-time Cy Young Award winner said he felt a tweak in his groin area. He said an MRI showed only inflammation.
“The good news is that it is not a muscle strain. I am really day-to-day. I am very confident this will be very mild,” he said.
Scherzer got Giants leadoff hitter LaMonte Wade Jr. to fly out for the first out of the game. Washington manager Dave Martinez and trainer Paul Lessard went out to the mound to check on Scherzer after he threw a 96 mph fastball that made the count 3-2 on Brandon Belt.
Scherzer got down and squatted, then stretched from side to side before throwing one pitch in front of Martinez and Lessard. Scherzer left after that warmup throw.
The right-hander, who turns 37 next month, entered the game with a 5-4 record and a 2.22 ERA.
“It was a lot better news than I thought,” Martinez said. “We’re still not out of the woods. We’ll see how he feels tomorrow.”
Padres right-hander Joe Musgrove (4-5, 2.33 ERA) faces Mets righty Marcus Stroman (5-4, 2.41) in a showdown of veteran pitchers who are with their hometown teams.
Musgrove was traded to San Diego in the offseason and has taken a star turn after growing up in nearby El Cajon, California. He threw the franchise’s first no-hitter in April.
Stroman, from nearby Long Island, has returned to peak form since joining New York during the 2019 season. He’s 9-6 with a 3.03 ERA in 23 starts overall with the Mets.
TOP OF THE HILL
Tampa Bay Rays left-hander Rich Hill looks to keep up his impressive run when the 41-year old faces the Baltimore Orioles. Hill is 4-1 with an 0.68 ERA (three earned runs, 39 2/3 innings) in his last seven starts. It’s the lowest ERA by a Rays traditional starter over a seven-start span in franchise history.
Right-hander Kevin Gausman (7-0) is unbeaten in 12 starts and takes an NL-best 1.27 ERA into his outing for the San Francisco Giants at Nationals Park. Erick Fedde (4.35) goes for Washington.
2009 WORLD SERIES REMATCH
In an unusual Saturday start to a series of only two games, the Yankees send right-hander Jameson Taillon (1-4, 5.09) to the mound in Philadelphia against Phillies right-hander Vince Velasquez (2-1, 4.33) in a rematch of teams that met in the 2009 World Series, won by New York in six games.
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