The Mets announced Friday that they’ve placed right-hander Chris Bassitt on the injured list and selected the contract of righty R.J. Alvarez from Triple-A Syracuse. No designation was given for Bassitt’s injury, suggesting that he was placed on the Covid-related injured list. The Mets also announced that pitcher Locke St. John cleared outright waivers and was assigned to Syracuse. He’d been designated for assignment earlier this week.
Acquired in an offseason trade that sent minor league righties JT Ginn and Adam Oller to the A’s, Bassitt has been a stabilizing presence in the Mets’ rotation amid several injuries. The steady right-hander has tossed 89 2/3 frames of 4.01 ERA ball over the life of 15 starts, though a pair of recent drubbings in San Diego and San Francisco (combined 15 earned runs in 7 2/3 innings) have skewed that number and masked how strong he’s been in his other 13 appearances.
That Bassitt has been placed on the Covid-related list doesn’t necessarily mean he’s tested positive. Players can also be placed on that list if they report symptoms or are deemed close contacts of someone who has tested positive. If Bassitt did test positive for Covid-19, the league’s health-and-safety protocols stipulate a 10-day absence or a pair of negative PCR tests and approval from a panel of three medical experts (team doctor, league-appointed doctor, MLBPA-appointed doctor).
Alvarez’s selection to the big league roster could bring about his first MLB appearance since way back in 2015. The righty pitched 28 innings from 2014-15 between the Padres and A’s and has been grinding through the Triple-A ranks since that time. Since his last MLB showing, he’s pitched in the minors for the A’s, Cubs, Rangers, Marlins, Brewers and now the Mets — for whom he logged a 2.49 ERA in 25 1/3 frames in Syracuse. Walks have been an issue for Alvarez this season, but he has a solid overall track record in parts of seven Triple-A campaigns.