Rumors of Carlos Carrasco’s Mets existence might be confirmed shortly after the All-Star break.
The veteran right-hander is scheduled to throw a live batting practice session Saturday at Citi Field, after which he will be evaluated for a minor league rehab assignment that could begin next week, according to manager Luis Rojas.
One plan the Mets have discussed is letting Carrasco build up his innings at the major league level — progressively working deeper into games — meaning his stay in the minors could be short, as opposed to the normal three-week period.
“Let’s see how this week goes,” Rojas said Friday before the Mets faced the Pirates.
Carrasco, who tore his right hamstring in spring training, was close to beginning a minor league rehab assignment in May when he was shut down because of discomfort. The Mets acquired Carrasco last winter in the deal with Cleveland that brought Francisco Lindor to Queens.
The Mets are leaning toward a bullpen game for Sunday’s series finale, but team officials were also weighing the possibility of starting Jerad Eickhoff, who returned to the organization last week on a minor league contract (he had previously been designated for assignment).
Rojas said he had not discussed with Jacob deGrom the possibility of the Mets ace returning on short rest for a potential abbreviated appearance. But if deGrom forgoes a side session Saturday with the idea of pitching a day later, he would likely receive that opportunity. DeGrom was originally scheduled to pitch Sunday, but that plan was changed after Tuesday’s rainout, which pushed his scheduled start to Wednesday. DeGrom has already said he plans to skip the All-Star Game.
Several Mets players and coaches wore red shirts bearing the team logo in fatigue style during pregame as a show of support to military families. The program is called RED: Remember Everyone Deployed. The shirts were distributed to the first 12,500 fans in attendance.
Friday began a stretch in which the Mets were scheduled to play seven straight games against the Pirates, through next weekend in Pittsburgh. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the Mets have only played the same opponent in seven straight games once previously — the Cubs from Aug. 31 to Sept. 3, 1967. This will be the first time the Mets close the first half and open the second against the same opponent.