Back stiffness keeps Mets' deGrom from start

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. (AP) New York Mets right-hander Jacob deGrom has been scratched from Monday's start against the Detroit Tigers in Lakeland because of back stiffness.

He stayed in Port St. Lucie and threw a lengthy bullpen session Monday morning instead. Seth Lugo will start for the Mets against the Tigers.

''I think it's more precautionary,'' deGrom said. ''I didn't want to ride on the bus for a couple hours and then go pitch. I'm actually going to throw off the mound here.''

DeGrom, who was 14-8 with a 2.54 ERA in 2015, said the reason for his back pain might be a soft mattress. After a recommendation by Mets ace Matt Harvey, deGrom recently purchased a firmer mattress and had it overnighted.

''I had to switch something up and that seemed to work,'' deGrom said.

Mets captain David Wright is scheduled to hit in minor league games Monday in Port St. Lucie.

Wright, who was diagnosed with spinal stenosis last year, has not yet made his Grapefruit League debut. The third baseman rested for a month after the season, which put him behind in his offseason program.

Mets manager Terry Collins said Wright could play in a Grapefruit League game Thursday or Friday.

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