Trying to make a push in the crowded NL playoff race, the New York Mets plan to skip struggling right-hander Jacob deGrom the next time through the rotation.
The team said it hadn’t decided who will start in deGrom’s place Monday night against Miami, another club in the wild-card hunt. New York manager Terry Collins rattled off five potential candidates Friday: Sean Gilmartin, Seth Lugo, Logan Verrett, Gabriel Ynoa and Rafael Montero.
The latter three are in the minors. Lugo, who earned his first major league win Thursday night at St. Louis, would have only three days of rest after throwing 82 pitches against the Cardinals. He exited with cramping in his right calf but was fine by Friday, the Mets said.
The 2014 NL Rookie of the Year, deGrom is 7-7 with a 2.96 ERA in 143 innings.
He had been on an extended roll, lowering his ERA to 2.29, before getting rocked for 13 runs and 25 hits over 9 ? innings in his last two outings, against San Francisco and St. Louis.
The Mets say deGrom has responded well to time off in the past and they think a brief break will help him correct a mechanical flaw they’ve discovered in his delivery.
As expected, the Arizona Diamondbacks activated center fielder A.J. Pollock, and he was in the lineup for Friday night’s game against the Cincinnati Reds.
Pollock, an all-star and Gold Glove winner last season, broke his right elbow in a head-first slide at home in a preseason game two days before the start of the regular season.
Pollock was second in the batting order against the Reds behind Jean Segura and ahead of Paul Goldschmidt.
The Diamondbacks sorely missed Pollock’s offense and defense in a season that went south in a hurry.
Pollock was reinstated from the 60-day disabled list and outfielder David Peralta (right wrist inflammation) took his place.
Outfielder Mitch Haniger was optioned to Triple-A Reno after Thursday night’s game to make room for Pollock’s return.
Pitcher gets arrested
Texas Rangers reliever Jeremy Jeffress, twice suspended in the minor leagues for violating drug rules, was away from the team Friday following his overnight arrest in Dallas on a drunken driving charge.
The club placed Jeffress on the restricted list before a game against Cleveland, but General Manager Jon Daniels said he expected the former Milwaukee closer acquired in a trade Aug. 1 to be back with the team Saturday.
Daniels said the AL West leaders were exploring the matter while Dallas police and Major League Baseball also conducted investigations.
The Brewers drafted Jeffress as the 16th selection overall in 2006. The right-hander was suspended for 50 games in 2007 and for 100 games in 2009, both times when he was in the minors.