New York Mets right-hander R.A. Dickey had a chance to lock up the National League Cy Young award on a steamy Monday night in Miami. He was unable to do it.
Instead, Dickey was good but not great in a 4-3 loss to the Marlins. Then he threw one final knuckleball, revealing that he has been pitching since April with a torn right abdominal muscle that will require surgery.
"The pain was fairly significant from time to time," Dickey said. "We just did a good job of managing that. Whether it was backing off in the bullpen in between starts or getting the treatment that I needed or whatever else I needed to help with that pain, we were able to do it in a way that I was able to perform and not worry about it."
Dickey is scheduled to undergo surgery Oct. 18 in Philadelphia and expects to be ready for the start of spring training.
He gave up solo home runs to Gorkys Hernandez in the fourth inning Tuesday and to Rob Brantly in the fifth, then a third run on three consecutive singles in the sixth. Though technically a quality start, it was still the knuckleballer's worst outing since an Aug. 15 loss to the Reds.
The Mets took him off the hook for a seventh loss in the eighth inning, rallying for three runs against Heath Bell. But they would have helped Dickey more had they been able to score early against Marlins starter Jacob Turner, who was sharp all evening.
Now, Dickey must wait and hope that his 20-6 record, 2.73 ERA and 230 strikeouts are enough to net him a Cy Young award at age 37. He appears to be the frontrunner.