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Mets ace Jacob DeGrom spoke to the media for the first time in a month-in-a-half Saturday and said his injured right shoulder blade feels “completely normal.”
DeGrom, 33, added that he’s waiting for clearance from New York’s medical staff to resume throwing off a mound.
“I feel completely normal,” DeGrom said prior to New York’s game against Philadelphia, via ESPN. “So I think that’s where it’s going to be like, do we push it? Do we not? That’ll be the discussion over the next few days, and when we get on the mound, what is the safest way to go about this?”
The two-time National League CY Young Award winner has yet to pitch this season since suffering a stress reaction to his scapula late in Spring Training. He missed the second half of the 2021 season due to an elbow injury. DeGrom played catch Friday out to 135 feet, but remains without a timetable for a return.
DeGrom said he believes the injury was caused by the delayed start to the season, following baseball’s 99-day lockout. As a result, Spring Training was shortened to just four weeks.
“When I look at it, you got a short ramp-up and you haven’t pitched competitively in, what, eight months?” DeGrom said. “So I felt like that’s probably what did it for me.”
DeGrom added that his shoulder felt normal with a couple weeks of rest. His most recent of multiple MRIs showed full healing in the shoulder blade and he doesn’t anticipate needing another one.
“You know, normally, bone heals stronger,” DeGrom said. “The last report was good, and they said it was completely healed. So now, just making sure it handles the throwing and that nothing pops up.”
The Mets have handled without DeGrom as well as one could do, sitting in first place in the NL East at 30-17. That’s even without fellow ace Max Scherzer, who went down this month with an oblique strain and is expected to be on the shelf for six to eight weeks.
With the Mets firmly in the mix for the postseason heading into the summer, DeGrom said being healthy for September and October is most important.
“It stinks not being out there,” DeGrom said. “That’s what we love doing, competing, and haven’t been able to compete in quite some time. So that’s where it’s like, you want to go out, you want to go probably more than you’re supposed to, but then you got to look at it as, if you go too early, you’re going to end up missing more time. So it’s trying to balance all that.”