Logan Verrett will likely start on Monday against the Marlins
In an effort to preserve Matt Harvey’s innings count down the stretch of the season and have him available for the postseason, Sandy Alderson said earlier this week the star right-hander would make no more than four more regular season starts including Tuesday’s start against the Nationals.
As such, the Mets appear to be preparing Logan Verrett to start in place of Harvey on Monday against the Marlins at Citi Field, as Terry Coloins has informed the right-hander he could pitch in that game, he said on Wednesday.
Verrett last started for the Mets on August 23 against the Rockies when he allowed a run in eight innings against the Rockies. He has made two relief appearances since his last start as well as a start at Triple-A Las Vegas.
After Verrett’s start on Monday, it seems logical to expect the Mets to reinsert Harvey for a start against the Yankees, shut him down again, and then have him make one start during the final week of the season. If needed, they could have him start against the Nationals in the final weekend of the regular season and have him pitch as close to he can on regular rest.
In fact, Sandy Alderson said this was the tentative plan for Harvey going forward.
If that series against Washington doesn’t matter, he could make an abbreviated start for sharpness while keeping innings down and around the 180 mark in advance of the playoffs, assuming everything goes according to plan between now and then.
Harvey has thrown 171 2/3 innings so far in 2015. His agent, Scott Boras, along with Dr. James Andrews, the surgeon who performed Tommy John Surgery on Harvey’s elbow 23 months ago, have recommended Harvey be shutdown when he reaches 180 innings this season.
Alderson also said they’d like to skip Jacob deGrom if possible, although he’s not operating under an innings limit as he might be fatigued in his first full big league season.
As is the case with Harvey, if the Mets clinch the division early enough, they could opt to skip deGrom – and anyone else they choose to for that matter – at a point during the final week or weekend of the season.
Of course, the Mets might be playing for a potential home field advantage against the National League West winner, which could factor into any such decisions about the rotation as well.