Rafael Montero, Erik Goeddel make rehab appearances on Sunday

Rafael Montero


Baron

Rafael Montero is now making significant progress during his latest rehab assignment, and could be positioning himself to return to the Mets in the coming weeks.

Montero pitched three innings for the Single-A St. Lucie Mets against the Bradenton Marauders at McKechnie Field in Bradenton on Sunday, and allowed a run on two hits with a walk and a strikeout, throwing a total of 25 of his 46 pitches for strikes in his start.

He has made three rehab starts in the last ten days. He has allowed two earned runs in seven innings in those three starts.

It’s pretty clear the Mets are trying to build Montero’s innings up to the point he can be a capable starting pitcher, perhaps as the spot starter the Mets have been waiting for him to become over the course of the season. Assuming that’s the case, he needs to get his pitch count up around 90 and to about six innings before being considered for activation.

That would put him on track to return in early September.

If the Mets decide Steven Matz is on-track to join the rotation at that point as well, perhaps the Mets will transition Montero into a relief role, something they may need to consider no matter what given the state of that situation right now.

Montero has been on the disabled list since April 29 with a strained right rotator cuff.

Meanwhile, Erik Goeddel pitched a scoreless inning of relief for Double-A Binghamton on Sunday, striking out two and allowing a hit.

Goeddel could return sometime this week. He has been on the disabled list since early June with an elbow injury.

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