Andrew Marchand of ESPN New York reports that Andy Pettitte has temporarily shut down his throwing program after suffering a “slight setback.” Pettitte:
“Doc said he was hoping it would be healed a little better than it was,” Pettitte said. “The first two weeks it healed really quick and I feel like we have slowed down a little bit. He said, ‘Let’s try to stay off it a little bit.’ That is where we are at.”
He was originally thought to be on schedule to return at the beginning of September. No word if this hiccup alters the timeline. UPDATE: No, no alteration in the timeline, the Yankees say.
The Mets signed left-hander Matt Purke to a minor league deal, the team announced Friday. Purke will also receive an invitation to spring training, where he could presumably beef up the club’s left-handed relief options alongside Jerry Blevins and Josh Smoker.
Purke has not appeared in the majors since 2016, when he was used in a dozen relief appearances by the White Sox. The 27-year-old racked up a 5.50 ERA, 6.0 BB/9 and 7.5 SO/9 in his first 18 innings with the team, and was demoted to Triple-A Charlotte in June to finish out the season. He spent the entire 2017 season in Triple-A as well, showing more promise with a 3.84 ERA, 3.8 BB/9 and 11.0 SO/9 in 48 appearances.
While Purke may not amount to much more than a depth piece in New York’s ‘pen, the veteran lefty figures to be part of the Mets’ new bullpen-first strategy next year. Reports from MLB.com’s Anthony DiComo indicate that the club will be focusing on improving their relief options in order to ease the workload of their starting pitchers, and will likely add a few more arms before the offseason comes to a close.