A day before their Wild Card Game against the Giants, where the Mets are throwing the one remaining young pitcher they have healthy from last year’s World Series rotation, the franchise saw 2016 first-round pick Anthony Kay undergo Tommy John surgery.
Kay will miss the entire 2017 season, which is a timeline with which the Mets have become all too familiar.
Noah Syndergaard will face off against Madison Bumgarner for the right to enter the NLDS, but after New York’s ace goes, its staff for the series would look nothing like it did in 2015. Matt Harvey, Jacob deGrom and Steven Matz are all out for the remainder of the postseason, with Matz also undergoing elbow surgery Tuesday. Zack Wheeler remains shelved as well.
However, Kay is traversing this path before throwing a professional pitch. The University of Connecticut-developed left-hander went No. 31 to the Mets, and it was believed concerns about his health led to the 21-year-old signing for well below that slot’s value — $1.1 million, which is approximately $900,000 below slot price.
Shortly after they drafted him, the Mets became concerned about an MRI that revealed fraying in his left UCL. So, this latest course of action isn’t exactly a surprise.
A 29th-round Mets pick out of high school, Kay did enough with the Huskies to vault his stock into first-round territory. However, he threw more than 100 innings between his college and Cape Cod seasons in 2014 and ’15, and logged 119 as a junior this year. Kay pitched more than 330 innings in between high school and being drafted.
So, 2017 for him will be a rehab year before Kay attempts to re-establish himself as a high-end prospect.