But Collins offered some clarity on that group going forward, confirming that R.A. Dickey will pitch three more times after Monday, saying that Collin McHugh will receive at least one more start and leaving open the possibility that Jeurys Familia could receive one, too.
The only starting pitcher still on a concrete schedule is Dickey, who started Monday's game against the Phillies and is in line to start every fifth game. Dickey will pitch again Sunday against the Marlins in his final start at Citi Field, then on Sept. 28 in Atlanta and Oct. 3 in the season finale in Miami.
In between, Chris Young and Jon Niese will continue to pitch regularly, while Collins sprinkles in work for Familia, McHugh, Jenrry Mejia and Jeremy Hefner, who will start Wednesday's finale against the Phillies. More innings should be available for everyone once rookie Matt Harvey, who is on a strict innings limit, makes his final start of the season on Tuesday.
Earlier this month, Collins said that Familia would also make at least one start down the stretch, likely during the season's final week. Though Collins has wavered slightly on that plan in recent days, citing the rookie's strong work out of the bullpen, he did indicate that Familia should still make a start.
All the while, Collins will evaluate Familia, Mejia and McHugh for possible bullpen assignments in 2013. Many scouts have long pegged Familia and Mejia in particular as future relievers, though the Mets are wary of committing too many young arms to the bullpen at once.
"That's a lot of young guys to put down there at one time," Collins said of a potential Opening Day bullpen containing all three of those pitchers. "I'm sure somebody in that group will be starting somewhere."