The New York Mets handed the ball to Dillon Gee on Opening Day, and after his first few starts, it looked like he was on his way to a stellar season. He was 3-1 with a sparkling 2.73 ERA after eight outings. On May 11, Gee was diagnosed with a strained right lat and missed almost two full months before his return on July 9 against the Atlanta Braves.
Gee has made four starts since his return, and he has posted an ERA of 5.82, which is anything but stellar. He has allowed five homer in since returning compared to only six prior to his DL stint, so it is clear that he is being hurt by the long ball. Despite his struggles, I would not be alarmed. Gee knows how to get it done on the mound. Next to Matt Harvey; Gee was the Mets’ best pitcher in 2013 and it looked like he would take the next step this year before the injury.
Another possible reason for his struggles can be the fact that he had a 10 day lay-off in between starts due to the All-Star break. I’m not making excuses for Gee, but it could have had an effect on his game.
Gee has had problems with injuries over the course of his career, but has always bounced back from them and been effective. He needs a few starts to gauge his arm strength and find his rhythm once again. Pitching is an art, and once you are thrown off or lose your rhythm, there will be rough patches. The strained right lat came at the wrong time for Gee due to the fact that he was pitching at the top of his game.
Once he gets back in his groove, he’ll be fine. Look for Gee to bounce back in his next start on Monday, August 4 when the Mets take on the San Francisco Giants.