Syndergaard on injured list; Cano activated

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Sunday, June 16, 2019

NEW YORK -- The New York Mets put pitcher Noah Syndergaard on the 10-day injured list with a strained right hamstring, then saw Jason Vargas leave Sunday's start against St. Louis because of a cramp in his left calf.

The Mets also activated second baseman Robinson Cano from the IL and put him in the lineup against the Cardinals.

Batting in the fourth inning, Vargas fouled off a ball and was clearly in pain. He was visited by Mets manager Mickey Callaway and an athletic trainer and promptly removed from the game. Pitcher Jacob deGrom pinch hit for Vargas and walked.

Vargas, 36, was sidelined from May 6-24 with left hamstring tightness but has been one of New York's most consistent pitchers since returning from the injured list. Entering the game, Vargas had allowed 11 earned runs over his last 45 innings and had won each of his past two starts.

Vargas allowed three runs -- two earned -- on just one hit over four innings against the Cardinals.

Syndergaard reached for his right hamstring after throwing a pitch in the seventh inning of New York's 8-7 victory Saturday night. He walked off the field with a bit of a limp.

Syndergaard (5-4, 4.55 ERA), 26, who is scheduled to undergo an MRI, has struggled at times in 2019, allowing four earned runs or more in eight of his 15 starts. He entered the season with a 2.93 ERA. Callaway noted that the decision to place Syndergaard on the IL was made because "it didn't seem like he would make his next start anyway."

Callaway said that the team had options, but declined to indicate who would take Syndergaard's spot in the rotation.

Cano, out since June 9 after aggravating a left quadriceps injury, was in New York's lineup, hitting fifth. It's the first time this season the 36-year-old has batted in any spot in the lineup other than third. A key offseason acquisition, Cano has appeared in just one game since May 22 and is hitting just .238 with three home runs and 14 RBIs.

Prior to joining the Mets, Cano never hit lower than .271 or failed to produce at least 50 RBIs in any of his 14 prior major league seasons. Callaway said Cano's workload would be monitored moving forward.