Sandy Alderson told reporters today that the organization will limit top pitching prospect Zack Wheeler to 180 to 185 innings this season, likely meaning he will have to go through an end-of-season shutdown, similar to Matt Harvey last year.
Alderson said the organization prefers to add no more than 30 innings per year to a pitcher’s workload. Wheeler pitched 149 innings last season and 115 in 2011. So far this season, Wheeler, in nine starts, has accumulated 48.1.
Wheeler, 22, has posted a 3.91 ERA and a 1.35 WHIP in those 48.1 innings. He has struck out 49 (9.1 K/9) and walked 20 (3.7 BB/9) this season. Wheeler returned to the Las Vegas 51s last week after missing a start due to an inflamed AC Joint. He is likely to join the Mets towards the middle or end of June, once the Mets feel he won’t be in danger of achieving Super Two status, giving him an extra year of arbitration.