He met with manager Terry Collins for about 10 minutes before Saturday night's game with the Diamondbacks to clear the air over comments he made in the New York Post. The newspaper quoted him Friday saying it was "unrealistic" for anyone to think the Mets would win it all.
Then Pelfrey took the mound. He allowed two runs in the first inning but settled down to throw three scoreless innings.
But then Gerardo Parra's line drive struck Pelfrey in the right elbow to start the fifth inning. Pelfrey wanted to stay in the game, but swelling occurred immediately near the bone, and the Mets didn't want to jeopardize his health. He exited with a two-run lead. The Mets wound up losing 6-4 to drop to three games under .500 for the first time since June 21.
Collins said he's unsure if Pelfrey will miss a start.
"Mike being Mike, he wanted to stay in," Collins said. "He said it didn't hurt. He wanted to stay in the ballgame and we just couldn't do it."
Afterwards, Pelfrey said his elbow feels good and he hopes to avoid missing a start. But he agreed leaving the game was the right move. He has a contusion of the elbow, but X-rays were negative.
"The frustrating part was I thought I had good stuff tonight for the first time in six or seven starts," said Pelfrey, who has a 4.53 ERA after allowing three runs (two earned) in four-plus innings. "It sucks that it ended like that."
As for his comments in the Post, Pelfrey said his thoughts were taken out of context and misinterpreted during what he thought was a positive conversation.
"I didn't think I said a negative thing," he said. "That is why I was shocked."
After meeting with Pelfrey before the game, Collins agreed with his pitcher.
"It was a tough day for him," Collins said. "He came into the ballpark getting ready to pitch and he gets hammered on things he didn't expect. Then he gets hit by a line drive on one of the days he had some of his best stuff."
An anonymous teammate was quoted by the paper as responding: "He's cutting his own throat. What's his record, six and nine? He's supposed to be the ace of the (bleeping) staff. Why don't you go and win 12 or 13 games?"
However, Pelfrey did talk to several of his teammates. David Wright said it's a non-issue.
"We know what kind of guy he is and what kind of teammate he is,"
Wright said. "I speak for the entire clubhouse when I say we have his back, and he's a guy you want taking the ball every fifth day. Guy takes a line drive off his pitching elbow and wants to stay in the game. That's the kind of guy you want pitching for you."
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.