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Mets RHP Carlos Carrasco dealing with elbow soreness

Mets RHP Carlos Carrasco is dealing with right elbow soreness and will not throw for a few days, manager Luis Rojas told reporters on Wednesday via Zoom.

Rojas added that the issue, stemming from a live bullpen session Carrasco threw earlier this week, is not believed to be serious and that the team is “optimistic” Carrasco will be back facing live batters by next weekend.

Carrasco, who arrived late to spring training due to a non-injury-related issue and had recently been experiencing body aches after receiving his second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, has not yet appeared in a game.

“Right now this is nothing too concerning from a medical standpoint,” Rojas said. “He’s just gonna take a few days off without throwing and we expect him to be back maybe by the end of next week facing live batters.”

Rojas added that the type of soreness Carrasco is dealing with is something he has experienced before at this juncture of spring training, noting that Carrasco’s “communication with the medical staff has been great about it” and that he is not likely to receive an MRI.

When it comes to Carrasco’s potential availability for Opening Day, Rojas was not prepared to rule him out, saying the team will have a clearer picture if Carrasco is able to face batters next weekend.

“We’ll have to see,” Rojas said. “Right now we’re pretty optimistic about him facing live batters by next weekend. That’s our goal as of now, and we’ll go from there as far as the progression, the ramp up getting into the season.”

Rojas added that the Mets would be on the “cautious side, always.”

“This year we’re playing a marathon again,” he said. “We want Cookie to be healthy, which is the approach that we’re taking and he’s taking right now — communicating to us without the level of concern that it’s something major happening.

“We’ll see where we’re at at that point. But if it’s gonna come to a question where the health is gonna be compromised, I think we’re gonna be on the safe side starting the season, of course.”

If Carrasco is not ready to start the season, the Mets have the option of using both David Peterson and Joey Lucchesi in the rotation along with Jacob deGrom, Marcus Stroman, and Taijuan Walker.

The Mets also have additional depth options for the starting rotation such as Jordan Yamamoto and Jerad Eickhoff.