Zack Wheeler reportedly felt some discomfort in his pitching elbow following a recent bullpen session, according to MLB.com’s Anthony DiComo. However, his physical at the start of spring training revealed no structural damage, and the Mets believe it’s just scar tissue causing the tenderness.
With Wheeler having missed the past two seasons following Tommy John surgery, this isn’t exactly great news. Wheeler’s return has already been delayed several months, as the Mets originally expected him to come back at the beginning of last July and kept pushing back his return date.
Pitching coach Dan Warthen told reporters Wednesday morning that the Mets are treating Wheeler with “kid gloves,” adding that his expected innings limit for the 2017 season is in the low 100s.
Originally acquired in a trade for Carlos Beltran during the 2011 season, Wheeler made his major league debut against the Braves in June 2013. In 2014, his only full season in the big leagues, Wheeler made 32 starts with a 3.54 ERA and had a 2.94 ERA over his final 18 starts.