Team doctors discovered a blocked vein in the right arm of Astros right-hander John Hudek during an examination Monday at Houston Methodist Hospital.
"That has led to swelling and an inability to continue pitching," said Dr. Bill Bryan, the Astros' orthopedic surgeon. "We have placed John on total throwing rest and suggested he get a second opinion."
Hudek, who played at Tampa Plant and Florida Southern and makes his off-season home in Tampa, will be examined by Dr. David Roos in Denver on July 3. Bryan said there is no timetable on Hudek's return and emphasized this was an unusual case.
"This is not a J. R. Richard situation," he said. "That was a blockage of the artery carrying blood to the arm, which is a totally different situation."
Bryan said he had "two or three minor-leaguers" that had this problem, but he did not remember whether they fully recovered.
"I'm glad we've done this and found out something rather than not knowing what it is," Hudek said.
Marlins 9, Mets 4: Jeff Conine's two-run homer sparked a five-run sixth, pushing visiting New York deeper into last place in the East.
Bobby Bonilla's two-run homer in the first and run-scoring single in the fourth gave starter Bobby Jones (4-5) and the Mets a 3-2 lead. Bonilla also hit a solo homer in the ninth.
Jones walked Kurt Abbott to begin the sixth. Conine, who was 3-for-5 and scored three runs, hit his 11th homer of the season 441 feet into the middle deck.
Terry Pendleton followed with a single and took third on Greg Colbrunn's single off shortstop's Edgardo Alfonzo's glove. Andre Dawson, who had two hits and two RBI, bounced into a double play, scoring Pendleton for a 5-3 lead. Tommy Gregg singled and Charles Johnson capped the rally with a two-run homer.
Marlins starter Pat Rapp (3-4) pitched seven innings, allowing three runs.
Since outfielder Gary Sheffield went down, his replacements in right _ Dawson, Gregg and Russ Morman _ have batted a combined .358 (19-for-53) with 6 HRs, 13 RBI and 14 runs scored.