The day after Marcus Stroman left his start before the fifth inning due to hamstring tightness, the Mets have called up Chris Flexen, who could potentially slide into the rotation if Stroman is unable to make his next start.
To make room on the 25-man roster, Ruben Tejada was DFA'd as the Mets reverted to a four-man bench.
Flexen, who the Mets used out of the bullpen earlier this season after also using him as a starter, had been working as a reliever with Triple-A Syracuse since June 12. But he returned to the rotation on Aug. 10 -- making two starts since then.
Speaking on Thursday, Stroman said he is "Looking forward to making my start on Tuesday, just kind of have to work through the progression."
Stroman added that he felt a "pretty strong cramp feeling, followed by some tightness" before coming out of the game, and that he was just being safe by coming out
"I'm gonna make that start against the Cubs on Tuesday," he concluded.
Speaking after Stroman, Mets manager Mickey Callaway said Stroman felt good, but was not yet ready to pencil him in for his next start.
Flexen tossed 62 pitches over 4.0 innings during his start on Aug. 17, so it's fair to believe he can give the Mets 70-75 pitches if he's called upon to start in place of Stroman.
The Mets also have the option of using Flexen out of the bullpen, where he was up-and-down with the Mets earlier this year but whose stuff definitely ticked up in the role.
There is also a chance that the Mets simply skip Stroman this turn through the rotation if he isn't ready to go -- or if the Mets simply want to err on the side of caution and give him some extra time.
Stroman is next scheduled to pitch on Tuesday, Aug. 27. But due to the off day this coming Monday, the Mets have the option of pushing all of their other starters up a day instead of using a spot-starter in Stroman's spot.