NEW YORK -- Rookie left-hander Steven Matz getting work as a reliever is off the table, manager Terry Collins said.
Matz makes a final rehab start with Double-A Binghamton on Monday at Reading. He then is due to rejoin the New York Mets, who will soon thereafter go to a six-man rotation.
Matz took two full years to recover from Tommy John surgery early in his professional career. He has spent nearly the past two months on the disabled list with a lat strain.
He also quietly has experienced several other issues throughout his career that bring into question his ability to bounce back quickly, which is required for bullpen work.
So if the Mets qualify for the postseason, it does not appear overly likely Matz would be used in a relief role.
“You’re talking about a guy who’s had injury issues,” Collins said. “To ask him to do something he hasn’t done before -- to try to go warm up fast, get ready in a hurry -- I’m not sure it’s fair to him.”