When he hit the DL with a shoulder injury about two weeks ago, it was not really clear how long Mets reliever AJ Ramos would miss. GM Sandy Alderson said today, though, that the righty is expected to sidelined for a significant stretch, as Tim Britton of The Athletic was among those to tweet.
Alderson revealed that Ramos is weighing a surgical route, in fact, though the precise nature of the underlying injury remains unclear. The alternative would be a rehab course that will also require further downtime.
“We certainly don’t expect him back anytime soon,” Alderson said. Though we still don’t know even loose potential timelines, it seems fair to read that as an indication that the Mets will go without one of their most experienced late-inning arms for the foreseeable future.
Of course, the 31-year-old Ramos had not been at his best in 2018. Acquired last summer even as the Mets sold off veterans, and then signed to a $9.225MM salary in his final year of arbitration, Ramos was seen as a key piece of the pen this year. Through 19 2/3 innings, though, he’s carrying a 6.41 ERA with 10.1 K/9 and 6.9 BB/9.
Control problems are nothing new for Ramos, who has 99 career saves but also a lifetime average of 4.9 walks per nine innings. With free agency beckoning at season’s end, though, it was all the more important that he demonstrate he could keep the free passes in check. As things stand, Ramos will have quite a lot to prove if and when he’s able to return later in the season.