Mike Pelfrey to the DL with partial UCL tear

The Mets have placed Mike Pelfrey on the 15-day disabled list with elbow swelling, the team said.

To take Pelfrey’s place on the roster, the Mets have recalled LHP Robert Carson from Double-A Binghamton.

In five games with the B-Mets this season, Carson has a 3.18 ERA, allowing two runs on eight hits and a walk while striking out six in 5 2/3 innings pitched.

According to Adam Rubin of ESPN New York, Pelfrey has a partial tear of the ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow, and the team is preparing to lose Pelfrey to season ending elbow surgery.

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April 24, 5:11 pm: In a press release issued by the team, the Mets said Pelfrey underwent an MRI at the Hospital for Special Surgery today, which revealed “swelling” in his elbow.

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To read earlier updates from this story,

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4:50 pm: According to SNY’s Matt Dunn, Pelfrey will be seeking a second opinion on his elbow, although he isn’t overly concerned considering he felt good after throwing a long-toss session after his outing on Saturday.

Pelfrey said he felt a “grabbing” in the first pitch of every inning during his outing on Saturday, but then it would subside until the next inning.

“I felt good the other day,” Pelfrey said, according Dunn. “I would throw one pitch and it would go away. The ball came out good. Everything felt good. There was just a little bit of tightness, which I thought was a little bit of tendinitis.”

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4:20 pm: Alderson said neither Matt Harvey or Jeurys Familia are immediate options to replace Pelfrey in the rotation.

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4:15 pm: Speaking with the media, Sandy Alderson said Pelfrey will undergo an MRI and ligament damage in Pelfrey’s elbow has not been ruled out.

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Michael Baron (Updated at 6:00 pm): This is just a real shame. Pelfrey is off to such a good start this year after making some key adjustments during Spring Training. While he had found early success with his modified mechanics, I have to wonder whether or not that adjustment played a role in this injury.

I expect this means Chris Schwinden will start Friday against the Rockies, at which point that spot in the rotation will be reevaluated. Chris Young is reportedly still a couple of weeks away from pitching in minor league games, and he would still have to build game strength and prove he can recover from his outings for a month or so before being in consideration.

Given the injury and the lack of rotation depth, questions are going to come up about Harvey or Familia’s readiness to step into the rotation. Neither are ready to join the big league rotation, as both have struggled badly at Triple-A with their command and efficiency in the early part of the season. That’s not to say that won’t change, especially as they gain more and more experience, but neither should be considered options today.