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For the fourth time in two months, New York Mets ace and Cy Young frontrunner Jacob deGrom has run into a health issue.
This time it was shoulder soreness that interrupted one of his most dominant starts of the season. deGrom threw three perfect innings Wednesday against the Chicago Cubs, striking out nine. He left following the third inning after struggling on the mound:
deGrom was replaced by reliever Sean Reid-Foley.
The outing improved deGrom's ERA to 0.54 with 111 strikeouts in 67 innings pitched, but the Mets can only hope this is another minor injury in a brilliant season full of them.
Jacob deGrom: 'This is getting old'
Much like he did after his last start that ended early due to medical concerns, deGrom expressed optimism that his injury was minor after the game.
deGrom and Mets manager Luis Rojas told reporters that they were encouraged by the pitcher's strength tests, but an MRI on Thursday will provide the final word, per MLB.com's Anthony DiComo.
deGrom's first answer:
"Felt good warming up, felt really good in the first and second inning, and then there in the third, my shoulder was sore. This is getting old. I want to be out there competing and coming out of these games with these little — hopefully, this turns out to be nothing ... They didn't want it to turn into anything serious."
Jacob deGrom's latest injury
deGrom exited his previous start Friday with right elbow tendinitis, but told reporters after the game he didn't believe it to be a major injury. The team apparently agreed, allowing him to take his usual turn in the rotation.
Before that, deGrom was scratched from a start on May 4 with right lat inflammation and exited a start on May 9 with tightness in his right side. The latter issue resulted in a trip to the 10-day IL (and the world's most lopsided rehab start). deGrom returned to the Mets on May 25 and made three starts before that elbow issue on June 11.
All of that adds up to deGrom having as many health scares as earned runs allowed (four) this season.
From Opening Day, deGrom was the clear frontrunner for the NL Cy Young Award, and his eye-popping numbers have even made him an MVP candidate for the first-place Mets. In the world of modern pitching, though, just one injury can bring even the greatest of seasons to a screeching halt.
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