See, you’re supposed to have tenderness on Valentine’s Day. Not the day after during a bullpen session. But Zack Wheeler felt it. And now his spring training throwing has been paused.
The righty had “tenderness” in his elbow following a recent throwing session, according to pitching coach Dan Warthen, but has not suffered what the Mets deem a setback, as a checkup indicated Wheeler likely has scar tissue in the joint.
Wheeler is expected to play catch Thursday to test the elbow and then throw from the bullpen the following day if there is no discomfort.
Considering Wheeler hasn’t thrown in a major league game in two seasons, his elbow probably has enough scar tissue to choke a small to medium size dog. (Note: we don’t condone the choking of dogs … 2007 was enough, thank you.) With his innings limit in the low 100’s, why bother holding that fifth rotation spot for him with Seth Lugo and Robert Gsellman drooling like a Rottweiler in heat? I hope he has Wade Davis’ phone number, because I have a feeling he’s going to have to travel his path and learn how to be a reliever and have a different routine. Heck, Addison Reed is going to need an eighth inning guy anyway, right? Okay, maybe not. But if Wheeler is going to aspire to a prominent role on the Mets, it most likely will be closer to that than fifth starter. Then if he wants to be a starter in a year or two like John Smoltz did after his injury, have at it. But seriously … Day 2 and we’re dealing with this? What happened to injury lists regressing to the mean?