It says a lot about how far A.J. Burnett has fallen that his throwing three perfect innings in an early March spring training game qualifies as news, but here we are.
Marc Carig of the Newark Star Ledger reports that Burnett threw 30 of 45 pitches for strikes yesterday and drew positive reviews from both catcher Russell Martin and manager Joe Girardi.
Girardi cited Burnett’s improved comfort level and mechanics, which were often out of sync as he went 10-15 with a 5.26 ERA in 33 starts last season. Or as Burnett put it afterward: “My mind is clearer. I’m not thinking about this and that. I’m just attacking.”
Mets pitcher Zack Wheeler will be placed on the 10-day injured list due to fatigue in his right shoulder, Newsday’s Tim Healey reports. The roster move is retroactive to July 12. Steven Matz will open up a two-game series in Minnesota, starting in Wheeler’s place on Tuesday.
As Healey notes, the soonest Wheeler can return is July 23, which would give him at most two starts ahead of the July 31 trade deadline. Wheeler has frequently been brought up in trade conversations as he can become a free agent after the season and the 42-51 Mets have been freefalling.
Wheeler, 29, owns a 4.69 ERA with 130 strikeouts and 34 walks across 119 innings of work this season.