Mets’ Jose Quintana out until at least July with rib injury

Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

Left-hander José Quintana won’t make his New York Mets debut until at least July because of a stress fracture in his rib.

The Mets are relieved that the prognosis wasn’t even more severe.

Mets general manager Billy Eppler told reporters a scan revealed a lesion on the impacted rib. Quintana went to New York to visit an orthopedic tumor specialist for a biopsy and additional scans that revealed the lesion was benign.

“This was bigger than baseball,” Eppler said. “José’s got our support and anything he needs. I’m just really thankful we’re at least here as opposed to one of the other potential outcomes.”

Eppler said Quintana will have an operation in New York that involves a bone graft. Eppler said recovery from the surgery will keep Quintana out until at least July 1 but didn’t offer any specifics beyond that.

“A lot will depend on if José, how soon he can do physical activity, how much down time does he need after this procedure,” Eppler said. “Does he need to take a week, or 10 days or two weeks before he can run. Because it’s a fairly involved surgery. Whenever you’re doing a bone graft, it’s going to hurt. That’s why it’s hard to set a specific timetable.”

The 34-year-old Quintana signed a two-year. $26 million contract with the Mets in December after going 6-7 with a 2.93 ERA in 32 starts with Pittsburgh and St. Louis last season. He is 89-87 with a 3.75 ERA.

Candidates to fill Quintana’s rotation spot include left-hander David Peterson and right-hander Tylor Megill. Peterson, 27, went 7-5 with a 3.83 ERA last season in 28 appearances, including 19 starts. Megill, also 27, was 4-2 with a 5.13 ERA in 15 games, including nine starts.

Peterson has struck out nine in eight shutout innings this spring training. Megill has worked 8 1/3 innings and has a 1.08 ERA with six strikeouts.

“Obviously it sucks to see one of your teammates go down with that, and I hope he gets back as quick as he can and healthy for the most part,” Peterson told reporters after he threw four hitless innings Tuesday. “But I think that has been kind of the thing all along. The front office and the coaching staff have wanted to have starting pitching depth. They made it a priority. So I guess this is kind of where it comes in handy, to have guys to choose from.”


Washington Nationals right-hander Cade Cavalli left his start after 2 2/3 innings. Nationals manager Dave Martinez told reporters afterward that Cavalli felt something behind his throwing elbow.

Cavalli is expected to have an MRI.

The Nationals selected Cavalli out of Oklahoma with the 22nd overall pick in the 2020 draft. The 24-year-old is regarded as one of the Nationals’ top prospects.


The Mets returned right-handed pitcher Zach Greene to the New York Yankees three months after taking him in the winter meeting draft of unprotected players.

The Yankees assigned him to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

Greene, 26, went 9-0 with a 3.42 ERA and 96 strikeouts in 68 1/3 innings for Scranton last season.


The Detroit Tigers claimed right-hander Freddy Pacheco off waivers from the Cardinals.

Pacheco, who turns 25 on April 17, went 3-7 with a 3.05 ERA and 84 strikeouts in 62 innings at Double-A and Triple-A last season.

St. Louis scratched infielder Paul DeJong from their lineup due to lower back tightness.


The Baltimore Orioles reassigned shortstop Jackson Holliday, the No. 1 pick in the 2022 draft, to their minor-league camp.

Holliday, 19, has shown plenty of promise this spring. He has gone 5 of 13 in spring training games with with a .529 on-base percentage and a .991 OPS.

Nimmo’s 2-run double sends Scherzer, Mets past Marlins 5-3

David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

MIAMI – Brandon Nimmo broke a seventh-inning tie with a two-run double, sending Max Scherzer and the New York Mets past the Miami Marlins 5-3 on Thursday.

Scherzer (1-0) coughed up a three-run lead but threw six solid innings in a matchup with NL Cy Young Award winner Sandy Alcantara as the Mets improved to 41-21 on opening day – the best record in baseball.

Garrett Cooper tied it 3-all in the sixth with a two-run homer off Scherzer. Jacob Stallings led off the inning with a single and scored on Luis Arraez‘s double.

“Ran into a little trouble there in the sixth, a couple extra hits and a homer really kind of puts a sour taste in your mouth finishing the day,” Scherzer said.

Nimmo had three RBIs from the leadoff spot after re-signing with the Mets in the offseason for $162 million over eight years. He ripped a low slider from reliever Tanner Scott (0-1) into center field to put New York ahead 5-3 in the seventh, propelling the Mets to their 41st win in the past 53 openers.

“The slider stayed over home plate,” Nimmo said. “I kind of dug it out a little bit and was able to get the barrel there. Just happy to see it fall and get past Jazz (Chisholm Jr.) and let the guys run.”

Nimmo also had a sacrifice fly that scored Daniel Vogelbach for a 1-0 lead.

Before the opener, the Mets placed Justin Verlander on the injured list with a strained upper back muscle, sidelining the reigning AL Cy Young Award winner before his first appearance with the team.

Miami fell to 12-19 on opening day as rookie manager Skip Schumaker began his Marlins tenure with a loss.

Arraez was 2 for 4 and had a leadoff single in his first Marlins at-bat after Minnesota traded him to Miami in the offseason. The addition of last year’s AL batting champion was meant to be a huge lift for Miami’s offense, which was among the worst in the majors last season.

Scherzer permitted four hits and struck out six. The three-time Cy Young Award winner walked two in his first opening-day start with the Mets.

Drew Smith and newcomers Brooks Raley and David Robertson combined to strike out six over three shutout innings of one-hit relief.

Robertson, filling in as closer after Edwin Diaz suffered a season-ending injury in the World Baseball Classic, got three outs for the save.

Alcantara was lifted after giving up two walks and two singles that led to two runs in the sixth. He finished with an uncharacteristic four walks and struck out two.

“First game. I know I have more opportunities to not walk anybody,” Alcantara said. “I just have to keep working hard.”

The Mets made it 2-0 in the sixth when Lindor’s sacrifice fly drove in Nimmo. Big league batting champ Jeff McNeil added an RBI single, despite being hit with a pitch clock violation when Pete Alonso, who drew a walk in the previous plate appearance, was late getting back to first base on a foul ball.


Chisholm made his debut in center field after moving from second base when the Marlins added Arraez. Chisholm committed a costly throwing error in the sixth that allowed Starling Marte to advance from first to second. Marte eventually scored.


Miami’s 1997 World Series MVP, Liván Hernández, threw out the ceremonial first pitch to Jeff Conine before the game.


Mets: Verlander will continue throwing at moderate intensity and will undergo more scans in a week. … Díaz (torn right patellar tendon) was placed on the 60-day IL. … RHP Bryce Montes de Oca (Tommy John surgery) and four others were put on the 15-day injured list, retroactive to March 27: RHP Sam Coonrod (right lat strain), RHP Stephen Ridings (right lat strain), LHP José Quintana (left rib fracture) and RHP Elieser Hernandez (right shoulder strain).

Marlins: LHP Steven Okert (left adductor strain), RHP Tommy Nance (right shoulder strain) and RHP Nic Enright (Hodgkin’s Lymphoma) were all placed on the 15-day IL. … INF Yuli Gurriel was selected from Triple-A Jacksonville. … RHP Max Meyer was put on the 60-day IL (Tommy John surgery).


The series continues Friday with New York LHP David Peterson facing LHP Jesus Luzardo.