For the first time in more than 30 months, Zack Wheeler is scheduled to start a meaningful game for the Mets. The 26-year-old righty will begin the season in the starting rotation, and is set to take the mound for the first time next Friday against the Marlins.
Wheeler showed promise in 2013 and 2014, but was shut down during the spring of 2015 for Tommy John surgery. He tried to make it back towards the end of last season, but a series of setbacks derailed those plans.
With the news that Wheeler will make the Opening Day roster, the Mets have also set their rotation in stone for the first week of the season.
We already knew Noah Syndergaard would start Opening Day, Jacob deGrom would get the call in game two, and Matt Harvey would start the third game in the opening series against the Braves. We now know Wheeler will start the first game against Miami, and that Syndergaard will jump a spot ahead in the rotation and pitch the fifth game of the season on regular rest. Robert Gsellman will round out the rotation, getting his first start next Sunday against the Marlins.
Steven Matz’s latest injury news means that Wheeler could get at least a few starts before the Mets need to make another decision regarding the rotation.