PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. (CBSNewYork/AP) — The Mets are hoping ailing Shaun Marcum is feeling well enough to start the sixth game of the season.

Marcum has not pitched in a spring training game since March 16. The newcomer complained of neck discomfort during a bullpen session Monday and is taking anti-inflammatory medication.

“I didn’t sign here to come on the DL,” Marcum said Wednesday. “I’ll find a way to pitch.”

Marcum missed a start last week because of a shoulder impingement that required a cortisone injection. He has a 4.66 ERA this spring in 9 2-3 innings.

The Mets have not said they will put Marcum on the disabled list. They could backdate his injury nine days, making him eligible to pitch April 7 at home against Miami.

“I wanted to make sure I’m 100 percent healthy, because it’s a game — I’m not going to play it forever,” said Marcum. “I’ve got to worry about my life after baseball too. It was definitely a concern, but now that I’m feeling better I don’t think it’s that big a deal.”

The Mets plan to use only four pitchers the first time through the rotation. They open at home on Monday against San Diego.

“I know our guys are getting back,” Opening Day starter Jon Niese said. “Hef’s (Jeremy Hefner) going to be all right. Marcum should be OK, and (Johan) Santana is working hard to get back.”

Leave your thoughts on the state of the Mets’ rotation in the comments…

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