El Duque Pitches Rehab Game

New York Mets pitcher Orlando Hernández before...Image via Wikipedia

Orlando Hernandez began his rehab games today according the NY Post Mets Blog. He hasn’t pitched this season because of a bunion and a ligament problem in a toe.

Today he went four innings on 62 pitches giving up two runs (one earned). Hernandez gave up four hits and a walk to go along with six strikeouts.

After he left the game El Duque went to the bullpen and threw 15 more pitches.

What a shot in the arm it would be to get El Duque back! It seems to be so long since we’ve seen him pitch that I went back to look at his 2007 season stats. He started 24 games and pitched in relief in 3 more. He was 9-5 with a 3.72 ERA.

The only problem when (if, I should say) he comes back is which pitcher goes off the roster. Joe Smith and Mike Pelfrey are the only pitchers with options and Pelfrey isn’t going anywhere. The likely choice to be designated for assignment would be Tony Armas. He’s the last man in, so he’ll probably be the first one out. Not that he’s pitched that badly but he could be replaced by El Duque as the long man/spot starter rather easily.

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