Jacob DeGrom’s life is all about waiting. Surgery can’t cure his injury, all that can is idleness day after day, and it must be killing him.
Jacob deGrom received the news well before Mets acting GM Zack Scott delivered the news to reporters that Jacob deGrom has suffered a setback in his rehabilitation from forearm tightness and will be shut down for two weeks, GM Zack Scott told reporters, including Newsday’s Tim Healey.
And that after that, deGrom will have to go through a ramp-up period before rejoining the rotation, pushing his expected return into September, in all likelihood.
For Jacob deGrom, the ultra-competitor who lives for nothing more than pitching a baseball while refining his chosen craft to retire major league hitters with guile and determining, the news must have been crushing.
Jacob deGrom On Stand-By For A Flight
To know that all he can do for the next month (at least) is to be in the Mets dugout while his teammates are scrambling to remain atop the NL East, and he can do nothing to help.
Jacob deGrom, like every major league pitcher, lives with the realization the next pitch they throw might be their last.
They engage themselves in a craft that is completely contrary to what the human body is built to do, with extraordinary torque on the arm and shoulder.
But they do it anyway because this is their chosen career path and it (can) make a handsome living for them – if they make it through the gauntlet.
Before this one, Jacob deGrom has undergone four setback injuries while on his way to a record-shattering season that almost certainly put him in line for a third Cy Young Award.
None of those injuries have been knockout punches like the one incurred by teammate Joey Luchessi, who is sidelined for the season after Tommy John and looking at a rehab of at least a year, and after that – who knows? Just ask Noah Syndergaard.
Nothing compels Jacob deGrom to remain with his team, but he most probably will, because competitiveness remains in his soul, and he is on hand and ready to sit in the Mets bullpen or dugout “talkin’ baseball” and most of all pitching with any of the wisest Mets pitchers willing to lend an ear.
Fingers Crossed Because It’s All To Do
However, for the Mets, it’s all about October, and while they’ll continue to float above water doing what they need to do as they have all season, it’s Jacob deGrom who will make the difference in October.
With only 95 innings to show for his 2021 season, most writers will shun deGrom in favor of a pitcher (and there are plenty of them) who have logged a full season when the Cy Young voting comes around later.
I’m not one of them, but it hardly matters because Jacob deGrom is a pitcher who exists for more than awards – except one – and that’s to go down in Met’s lore, along with Tom Seaver, as the one guy who put the Mets over the top when no one else could.
How do I know this? I don’t, and I’ve never witnessed the words from Jacob deGrom himself, but I don’t need to because just as deGrom has a “feel” for excellence on the mound, I have the same feel for what he is all about, and I’ll let it go at that.
The Mets will carry on without “Jake,” and they’ll look to Marcus Stroman, Tylor Megill, Taijuan Walker, newcomer Rich Hill, and even Jerad Eickhoff if need be to fill the enormous void left by Jacob deGrom.
Jacob deGrom: Time
Still, it’s all about waiting for nature to take its course so deGrom can be whole again and ready to take the ball at full strength in October.
Jacob deGrom will not pitch again at 85% or even 90% to his credit, and if you are a Mets fan, you wouldn’t want him to.
They say time is the great healer of all wounds, physical or mental.
Jacob deGrom is putting that theory to the test and living with the awful pain of nothing to do but wait….for now.
Here’s What Readers Are Saying…
Gregg Moses Not counting on Jake coming back this year. Uggggg.
Ron Naldi Another reason why we needed to get Berrios.
Betty Wlazlo-Brennan Speedy recovery Dear Jake,
Raymond F. Aveta Jr. Sad it also cost him another Cy Young Award
Deborah Crane I know as a fan we are too! However, I can only imagine his frustration as a pitcher and his inability to help his team. No ball player likes the bench! Especially the BEST pitcher in baseball. Do what you have to do Jake – we all want you back!
Bradford Hardy such a competitor and a great teammate, I can only imagine the frustration he is feeling not being able to go out and help this club.
Chester Miles If Jake can come back and shut it down his last 4-5 starts he’s Cy young hands down. If he has a hiccup, it’s over.