Mets' Jacob deGrom: To start second game of season

DeGrom (back) is slated to start the Mets' second game of the regular season March 31 against the Cardinals, Anthony DiComo of reports.

There had been some worry that deGrom wouldn't be recovered from his back stiffness in time to be available for Opening Day, and it turns out that technically he won't be. The Mets may have turned to Noah Syndergaard for Opening Day regardless of the health of deGrom's back, though, so this shouldn't be taken as a negative sign for deGrom going into the regular season. It's undoubtedly positive that deGrom won't have his turn skipped in the rotation at all, as the back no longer appears to be a concern and the right-hander's main focus at this time is simply building up his pitch count in his subsequent spring outings.

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