Gary Carter diagnosed with bronchitis after being rushed to hospital

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Hall of Fame catcher Gary Carter was rushed to the hospital Thursday night after experiencing a “serious coughing attack” and “having shooting pains in his back,” his daughter Kimmy Bloemers wrote on a private family website yesterday. The 57-year-old Carter is currently battling Stage 4 brain cancer.

Mike Mazzeo of ESPN.com reports that Carter underwent X-rays and a CT scan on his chest and back, which revealed a case of bronchitis. After initial fears about blood clotting or pneumonia were ruled out, Carter was able to return home yesterday.

“What a huge praise that it is not as serious as it could have been,” Bloemers wrote. “However because of dad’s condition, a chest cold can drain dad’s energy more. The sweet nurse said that everything looked great, which was a relief.”

Carter began his cancer treatment earlier this month. He currently in the process of undergoing 6 1/2 weeks of radiation and a year of chemotherapy.

During last night’s game against the Angels, the Mets placed a huge “Get Well Soon” card for Carter in the Jackie Robinson Rotunda for fans to sign. Here’s a picture of one fan signing the card, courtesy of the Mets’ Twitter feed.

James Paxton will “nerd out big-time” to stay healthy next year

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To the surprise of, well, very few, the Mariners didn’t make the cut for the postseason this year. While they threw their hats in the ring for a wild card berth, their pitching staff just couldn’t stay healthy, from the handful of pitchers who contracted season-ending injuries in spring training to Felix Hernandez‘s shoulder bursitis to structural damage in Hisashi Iwakuma‘s right shoulder. Left-hander James Paxton missed 79 days with a lingering head cold, strained left forearm and pectoral strain. Heading into the 2018 season, the lefty told MLB.com’s Greg Johns that he plans to “nerd out big-time” in order to prepare for a healthy, consistent run with the club.

So far, Johns reports, that entails a new diet and workout program, hot yoga sessions and blood testing. “I just think there’s more I can do,” Paxton said. “I haven’t done the blood testing before. Finding out if there’s something I don’t know about myself. It’s just about learning and trying to find what works for me.”

When healthy, the 28-year-old southpaw was lights-out for the Mariners. He helped stabilize the front end of the rotation with a 12-5 record in 24 starts and supplemented his efforts with a 2.98 ERA, 2.4 BB/9 and 10.3 SO/9 through 136 innings. Despite taking multiple trips to the disabled list, he built up 4.6 fWAR — the most wins above replacement he’s compiled in any season of his career to date. Had he not been felled by a pectoral injury in mid-August — one that came with a five-week trip to the disabled list — the club might have been been able to make a bigger push for the playoffs.

Of course, even if Paxton manages to stay healthy next season, the Mariners still have the rest of the rotation to worry about. They cycled through 17 starters in 2017 and tied the 2014 Rangers with 40 total pitchers over the course of the season. Per GM Jerry Dipoto, their top four starters (Paxton, Hernandez, Iwakuma, and Tommy John candidate Drew Smyly) only contributed 17% of total innings pitched, just a tad below the 40% average. Finding adequate big league arms and compensating for injured aces (both current and former) will be tough. Still, getting a healthy, dominant Paxton back on the mound for 30+ starts would be a huge get for the team — whether or not the postseason is in their future next year.