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Jacob deGrom makes Mets’ history with 200th strikeout


Mets’ hurler Jacob deGrom pitched himself into the history books on Friday, whiffing 10 of 29 batters over 7 2/3 innings against the Nationals. The strong start was a breath of fresh air for the right-hander, whose win snapped a rough two-game losing streak and marked his ninth start with double-digit strikeouts this season.

The penultimate strikeout of deGrom’s outing, a three-pitch knockdown against Michael A. Taylor, placed the pitcher in rare company. He now owns 200 strikeouts on the year (201 following his inning-ending punch-out against Alejandro De Aza) and is one of four Mets’ pitchers with multiple 200-strikeout seasons under his belt, including Tom Seaver (1968-1976), Dwight Gooden (1984-1986, 1990) and David Cone (1988, 1990-1992).

While deGrom has yet to match the sparkling pitching line he posted in 2015, he needs just five more strikeouts to eclipse his all-time single-season strikeout record of 205. He entered Friday’s competition with a 3.49 ERA, 2.6 BB/9 and career-best 10.4 SO/9 through 165 innings in 2017.

Dbacks outfielder Steven Souza injured his right shoulder last night

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Arizona Diamondbacks right fielder Steven Souza dove for a ball in a spring training game last night, missed, and ended up injuring his right shoulder.

It looked bad, too. Center fielder Jarrod Dyson stood over him, frantically waving to the dugout for a trainer as Souza kicked his legs in apparent pain. Souza held his arms awkwardly as he walked off the field. At the moment the Dbacks are calling it a right shoulder strain, but he’ll get an MRI on it today after which a more specific diagnosis will come.

If Souza is out for a while it’s a pretty big blow to Arizona’s 2018 plan. Souza was acquired to help cushion the blow of losing J.D. Martinez in free agency. While not the hitter Martinez is, Souza hit 30 homers in Tampa Bay last year, stood likely to at least match that in the more hitter-friendly confines of Chase Field and, of course, plays superior defense.

Potential replacements for Souza include moving David Peralta from left to right and inserting Yasmany Tomas in left or having fourth outfielder Dyson, or perhaps a platoon of Dyson and utilityman Chris Owings, handle right. Socrates Brito is another internal option.

Obviously the Snakes will wait to hear the results of the MRI before going too deeply into replacement plans, all the while hoping that Souza’s injury is far less serious than it appeared to be last night.