Carlos Carrasco transferred to 60-day IL, delaying Mets return

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Carlos Carrasco pitching at 2021 Mets spring training
Carlos Carrasco pitching at 2021 Mets spring training

Mets RHP Carlos Carrasco was transferred to the 60-day IL on Thursday, delaying his return from a hamstring injury.

The initial plan was for Carrasco to pitch in a rehab game on May 9 before potentially being activated.

Now, the earliest Carrasco will be able to return is May 31.

Carrasco has been steadily working his way into game action, and tossed 6.0 innings during a simulated game on Tuesday in Port St. Lucie, Fla.

While Carrasco's return will be at least slightly delayed, he has not suffered a major setback.

Without Carrasco, the Mets have been relying on the struggling Joey Lucchesi as their No. 5 starter, though manager Luis Rojas would not commit to Lucchesi starting on Saturday at Citi Field against the Arizona Diamondbacks.

With Carrasco's return being pushed back from May 14 to May 31 at the earliest -- and Noah Syndergaard not returning until June -- the Mets will need to keep trotting someone out in that No. 5 slot over the next few weeks.

If the Mets don't turn to Lucchesi, they could use an opener and/or have a bullpen game each time the No. 5 spot is needed, with Miguel Castro and Jacob Barnes among the options to start those games.