Mike Pelfrey is on schedule in his recovery from Tommy John Surgery, and expects to play catch for the first time next Tuesday, according to Adam Rubin of ESPN New York.
Pelfrey was placed on the disabled list in late April after an MRI revealed swelling in his right elbow – he underwent Tommy John Surgery on May 1, and his recovery is expected to take approximately 12 months.
However, Rubin writes “Pelfrey very well may be ready for Opening Day next season.”
Pelfrey signed a one-year, $5.7 million contract with the Mets in January. He is eligible for arbitration for the final time this winter, and can become a free agent after the 2013 season.
Per MLB rules, a player cannot earn less than 80 percent of his prior year’s salary through the arbitration process.
Matthew Cerrone, MetsBlog.com:In all likelihood, the team will non-tender him next Spring and then re-sign him to a deal like they did with Chris Young last year. It’s common practice in baseball, it seems. This way, the player gets the medical support and training facility of a team he knows, and the team gets the potential of a return at low cost. But, that’s about all that can be speculated on at this point. The actual injury, surgery and recovery are such a long ways away, there is no telling at this point what the future holds for Mike and his arm.
Michael Baron, MetsBlog.com:For a long time, I wasn’t exactly Pelfrey’s biggest fan. He was inefficient, never seemed to harness any of his secondary pitches, and never really formed an identity as a result. But the light went on about mid-way through camp this past Spring (thanks in part to a wake-up call from management and an alteration to his mechanics), and he really started to put things together through April. I don’t think there’s any harm at bringing back Pelfrey on a minor league deal after non-tendering him – this team needs depth and, as Matt said, he knows the organization, it’s facilities and can have continuity during his recovery process. At worst, he isn’t ready to contribute until May or June, but the Mets will have an idea how he might fit into their pitching plans based on how their rotation plays out through that time.