David Peterson knows what it’s like to be stuck in a damaged pitcher.
He was just a week away from his senior season at Regis Jesuit High School Aurora, Columbus, when he broke his fibula in his right leg in a basketball game. Peterson, now 26, pushed his bone to two points while pushing for a layup. The injury forced him to undergo surgery and he was forced to go to college.
He described it as a “life-changing” moment.
“It made me cringe,” said Peterson, who despite being injured was selected by the Red Sox in the 28th round of the 2014 MLB Draft, but decided not to sign. “He ended up having a good chance of getting into professional baseball outside of high school. He made the decision for me that I was going to Oregon and go to college for a couple of years.
“The three years I was in Oregon I wouldn’t change for anything. I wouldn’t be sitting here today if I probably didn’t. ‘
Here, of course, is the turn of the Mets.
Peterson’s record career at the University of Oregon led the Mets to the 20th overall pick in the 2017 draft. He was in the majors by 2020, making 25 appearances with the Mets in the first two seasons, with mixed results and more injuries.
Now it’s Peterson who’s healthy, and the other pitchers who are hurt. Max Scherzer is recovering from an obstructive strain, Jacob deGrom has a shoulder injury and Tylor Megill, the star of the start of the season, is recovering from biceps tendinitis.
With all three on the shelf, Peterson has sided with the Mets ’short staff. He has an ERA of 3.03 in the 29⅔ innings, and Mets has won all five games started by Peterson (2-0). There’s nothing wrong with a guy who didn’t get on the opening day list.
2022 MLB season
“Calm down, right? Don’t try to get them all out. Strikeouts are boring! They are also fascists. Throw a few balls on the ground, it’s more democratic. “
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“He knows there’s a chance for him now,” director Buck Showalter said before Peterson’s final start. “He’s trying to run to the door.”
Although Peterson has mostly given up, his performance against Washington Nationals on Monday served to remind him that he is still suffering from the growing pain. He won four runs in the four and two-thirds innings, walked four and knocked out one. That effort was enough for the Mets to win 13-5.
The lack of stability has not made this process easier for Peterson.
Although Showalter says Peterson has “graduated” to achieve “consistent initial repetitions,” that hasn’t been the case for most of this season. His first appearance was four innings in the April 11 relay, and he has yet to make more than two consecutive outings at the same level this year, having had several chances for AAA Class Syracuse several times to help the Mets deal with injury issues. Peterson spent 10 days on May 13, in the junior, and May 23, in the major, until the start. The gap, however, did not prevent him from winning a final early victory, as he was limited to two races won by the San Francisco Giants over six innings.
He left seven days before being thrown against the Nationals on Monday.
Peterson said that although his goal is to be a fixture in the team’s rotation, he doesn’t think he was trying to figure out how to get into the puzzle now or when the other pitchers in the team are healed. “I can’t control what the front office decides or the moves that are made,” he said. “My focus is on my daily work and improvement.”
It’s the right attitude, but in practice it can be difficult to get out.
“It’s very hard,” Drew Smith said of the shot in a lighter state of relief. “You try not to think about it, but it’s always on your mind whether the team needs to make a move, if it’s you, things like that. But once you have a long time to prove yourself, you will definitely find it easier.
Peterson is trying to win the competition. Scherzer and Chris Bassitt said he was excited about the off-season purchases, though those moves frustrated his chances of starting the 2022 major season.
“Everyone has their backs to each other,” Peterson said. “There are no enemies when it comes to boys fighting for the same position. We are all here with the same goal, ”which is to bring the World Series to Queens.
Peterson also tried to get as much information as he could from his teammates, a habit he developed while repairing a broken leg in high school. “He’s an observer,” said Showalter approvingly. “He’s looking at games and talking to players and seeing things.”
Peterson thinks he has things to learn from every Mets headline, but the opportunity to be around Scherzer and deGrom has been particularly informative. “I couldn’t learn from the two best boys,” Peterson said. “That’s two of the Future Hall of Fame, five between the two Cy Young.”
Scherzer is a few weeks away from returning, and although there has been some optimism with deGrom lately, he has yet to look forward to this season, as he is waiting and watching the situation as he works through a stress reaction in the scapula. Megill, meanwhile, was expected to drop straight batting training on Tuesday after landing on the injured list on May 12th.
Improving his consistency and being a reliable opportunity for the team, Peterson hopes to continue when his famous teammates return from injury.
“It’s exciting to be a part of such a rotation,” Peterson said. “Obviously we’ve come up with some key guys, but for me it’s been the mentality of the next man. It’s my turn to give the team a quality start and to deepen the game and try to help me win as many ball games as I can. “