After more than a month on the shelf, Josh Smoker is making his return to the Mets’ bullpen. The team activated the hard-throwing lefty off the 10-day disabled list, and he’ll be able to pitch as soon as Thursday in the Mets’ series finale against the Cardinals.
Smoker was sidelined back in June after suffering a left shoulder strain, which conspicuously happened right after the longest outing of his career. He still reportedly has “loose bodies” in his throwing arm, but the medical staff says he should be healthy enough to play.
The 28-year-old has struggled mightily this season in terms of run suppression, sporting a ghastly 7.45 ERA in 29 innings. But he has struck out 36 batters in the process, and the Mets are hoping he can use that as a stepping stone to improve.
To make room on the roster, the team designated righty Neil Ramirez for assignment, officially making his tenure with the Mets a short and forgettable one. In 20 appearances this season, he threw 21 innings and tallied 26 strikeouts, 19 hits, 17 walks, and a 6.43 ERA.