Max Scherzer starting for Mets on Sunday despite neck issue

The Mets considered pushing back Max Scherzer’s next outing from Sunday to Tuesday due to the neck stiffness he experienced recently, but the right-hander will start on Sunday against the Dodgers.

General manager Billy Eppler said Friday that the neck issue was different than the spasms Scherzer experienced earlier this season and was more sleep-related.

Jose Quintana is scheduled to make his Mets debut Wednesday against the White Sox after he had been sidelined since spring training following rib surgery.

Carlos Carrasco will start Tuesday and David Peterson will move from the rotation to the bullpen, for now, as the Mets prepare for some questionable weather in New York over the weekend and a potential pitch limit for Quintana.

Max Scherzer
Max Scherzer

Peterson, who allowed a run in his inning of relief on Friday in the Mets’ 6-0 loss to the Dodgers, likely will remain in the pen as a long reliever for about a week, according to Eppler, while the Mets evaluate their pitching depth.

At that point, Peterson may be more valuable as a starter at Triple-A Syracuse, where he would continue to be built up.

Peterson had a 2.35 ERA in his last three starts after he was sent to the minors following his first eight outings in the majors this season, in which he put up an 8.08 ERA.

“It was good to see him pitch better, simple as that,’’ Mets manager Buck Showalter said, adding Peterson “could be effective” as a reliever.

Of Quintana, who signed a two-year, $26 million deal in the offseason, Showalter said it has been a “long road for him. It’s been tough.”

Quintana threw a simulated game on Thursday and had to be added to the active roster on Friday, which led to left-hander T.J. McFarland being designated for assignment.

The 34-year-old McFarland made three appearances for the Mets.

Jeff McNeil
Jeff McNeil
Corey Sipkin

Jeff McNeil spent part of the All-Star break playing in the New York State Open at the Bethpage Black course in Farmingdale, L.I., and although he failed to make the cut, McNeil said it was “good to keep the competitive juices flowing.”

He’s hoping for more success on the field than he had during a rough first half, which he finished with a .659 OPS that would be the lowest of his career if that’s how he ends the season.

Before going hitless with a pair of strikeouts Friday, McNeil pointed to his success after the break last year as cause for optimism.

“I had an unbelievable second half last year,’’ McNeil said. “Hopefully, I’ll find that magic again.”

Before the 2022 break, McNeil had an OPS of .780, and he closed the year with an .898 OPS over his final 81 games.

Tommy Pham, who was removed from the game this past Sunday with a tight right groin, was healthy enough to start at DH on Friday and went 0-for-4.

MLB announced that, following a review, the winning pitcher of the Mets’ April 27 win over Washington has been changed from Brooks Raley to David Robertson.