Mets’ Kodai Senga getting acquainted with Verlander, Scherzer

PORT ST. LUCIE — Kodai Senga is getting to know the co-aces of the Mets’ rotation.

After throwing a live batting-practice session Thursday, his second in spring training, the Japanese right-hander said he has begun communicating with Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer to get their input on topics ranging from the five-man rotation to side sessions between starts.

“I think I’m able to spend a lot of good quality time with them,” Senga said through his interpreter.

Senga, during his latest throwing session, used PitchCom for the first time this spring. The communication system, which was used by teams last year for the first time, allows the catcher to provide pitch signals by using a wristband. The pitcher receives the message through an earpiece.

Like all MLB pitchers, Senga is getting used to the new pitch clock.

Mets starter Kodai Senga throws during a live batting practice.
Corey Sipkin for the NY Post

“The first time I felt a little rushed with the pitch clock,” Senga said. “But this time around with using the PitchCom, it made everything easier and a few times I felt like I may have been rushed and looked at the clock and still had 10 seconds left, so I felt pretty good with that.”

After a bullpen session 1 ½ weeks ago, Senga said he was still adjusting to the slope of the mound, which is steeper than what he was accustomed to in Japan. Now, however, he doesn’t view it as a factor.

“Apparently that mound we talked about previously, it wasn’t just me and other pitchers felt like it was a little bit different,” Senga said. “I don’t feel that the mound or the ball caused any difficulties this time around.”

Manager Buck Showalter is interested in receiving his first real look at Joey Lucchesi, who will be one of the starting pitchers Friday in an intrasquad scrimmage. The left-hander spent last season rehabbing from Tommy John surgery.

“He’s been a guy who has been out of sight, out of mind, so I am hoping [Friday] is the start of a lot of healthy pitching for him,” Showalter said.

Team brass is considering whether Lucchesi could be an option from the bullpen (Brooks Raley is the team’s only lefty reliever on a major league contract) or if he will serve as rotation depth, along with David Peterson and Tylor Megill. The 29-year-old Lucchesi has a minor league option remaining.

Showalter is considering the idea of keeping several minor league players in major league camp longer than normal just because of their experiences last season with the pitch clock.

“I’d like to keep those guys on campus just to have a voice that has lived it,” Showalter said.