Colon waits in wings as deGrom awaits word

Mets have contingency plan as young starter preps for first child

Colon waits in wings as deGrom awaits word

NEW YORK -- As the hours tick away, uncertainty continues to reign over Jacob deGrom's potential home opener start Friday at Citi Field.

The Mets now have an official contingency plan -- Bartolo Colon -- in place should deGrom be unable to pitch. But the team won't know one way or the other until deGrom begins to warm up for his start against the Phillies. He is awaiting word from his wife in Florida, who is two days late with the couple's first child.

"Everybody says the first one's a little different," deGrom said. "I think just whenever I get the call, I'm going to go ahead and leave."

Until that happens, deGrom will stick around Citi Field, never far from his phone. He participated in the Mets' team workout Thursday.

It may not be an ideal situation for the Mets, but they feel they are covered should deGrom need to head to LaGuardia at the last moment. Colon, who recorded four outs on Opening Night in Kansas City, is accustomed to pitching on short rest with little notice, much as he did coming out of the bullpen last October.

"One thing about Bartolo, he handles all the situations," Mets manager Terry Collins said. "He's such a veteran, he's used to having rain delays, used to getting spot starts, all those things that have occurred throughout his career. So if something happens to Jake and we need a guy, I think he's the best guy to step in."

Still, the Mets hope that deGrom -- an All-Star last season and their best pitcher statistically -- will be able to pitch against the Phillies.

"I know Jake's pumped up," Collins said. "But I know he'd also like to have that baby arrive, and we can move on."

Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.