Jacob deGrom did it all Friday night, pitching and hitting the Mets to victory.
Mets Manager Luis Rojas even trusts him to diagnose his own elbow injury — and Dr. deGrom says not to fret.
“My level of concern is not too high,” deGrom said.
The two-time N.L. Cy Young Award winner faced the minimum over six innings and ripped a two-run single before leaving with right flexor tendinitis that clouded the Mets’ 3-2 victory over the San Diego Padres on Friday night.
DeGrom was pulled after 80 pitches and extending his scoreless streak to 22 innings.
The right-hander said he felt discomfort in his elbow this week but wasn’t worried by it. He tore the ligament in his pitching elbow as a minor leaguer and needed Tommy John surgery in 2010, and he said “this didn’t feel anything like that.”
The elbow began to tighten up in the sixth inning, leading to the decision to pull deGrom. He underwent several tests to ensure the ligament was intact — something the 32-year-old does regularly — but those tests did not include any imaging.
“Whenever you say elbow anything for a pitcher, everyone gets nervous about that,” deGrom said. “But like I said, I do a lot of ligament tests on my own, and doing those, knowing what those feel like, it’s a totally different spot.”
DeGrom doesn’t plan to seek an M.R.I. or other imaging, and he expects to proceed with his normal between-start routine and pitch next time his rotation spot comes up.
Rojas is on board with that plan.
“I’m not concerned either, just because Jake is not,” Rojas said. “This is a guy who knows his body really well, knows his arm really well.”
The injury spoiled a memorable two-way performance by deGrom, who has five R.B.I. this season — compared to four earned runs allowed.
DeGrom’s 0.56 E.R.A. is the lowest ever by a pitcher through 10 starts, just ahead of Juan Marichal’s 0.59 in 1966.
Facing San Diego and star slugger Fernando Tatis Jr. for the second time in six days, deGrom was perfect until Wil Myers beat the shift with a weak grounder in the fifth. Myers was caught stealing by catcher James McCann a few pitches later.
DeGrom thought he had a shot at a perfect game after four innings.
“Definitely the thought creeped into my mind,” he said. “Throwing a no-hitter or a perfect game has definitely been a goal, just haven’t been able to do it.”
Myers was the only runner to reach against deGrom, who struck out 10 despite the abbreviated outing. The Mets have been limiting his workload since an injured list stint in May with right side tightness.
Billy McKinney drove in a run with the first of his two doubles in the fifth, and deGrom followed with his two-run hit.
DeGrom won a third straight start in the same season for the first time since August 2018.
“He’s plus stuff, plus command,” Padres Manager Jayce Tingler said. “He’s as tough as they come.”
San Diego dropped its third straight. Blake Snell (2-3) allowed three runs in four-plus innings, and the Padres couldn’t do enough damage against the Mets’ bullpen.
The Mets increased capacity with virus protocols easing, and roughly 26,637 came to Queens ready to cheer for deGrom. They chanted “MVP” throughout — loudest after his fifth-inning hit.
He got his 100th strikeout when Tatis went down swinging in the fourth, reaching the mark in 61 ⅔ innings — the fewest innings to reach 100 strikeouts in a season since the mound was moved to 60 feet, six inches in 1893, per ESPN.