After deGrom Breaks Mets Fans Hearts, Ownership Inks Justin Verlander
Are the Mets the Favorite now to win 2023 World Series?
On December 3, 2022, the Texas Rangers landed one of the more dominating pitchers in the game over the past five seasons, as Jacob deGrom chose to leave the only organization he had played for since being drafted in the 2010 (New York Mets) for lesser lights and glamour of Arlington, Texas. Some have reported that the former Mets Ace just couldn’t deal with the Covid Mandates in the Big Apple and chose a Red State where he can live freer and less worry. But whatever the true reason, the Rangers nabbed a 3-time Cy Young award winner. But can he help turn around a losing franchise over the past six seasons and stay healthy and on the field? That is the question many will want to see answered.
Now with that loss, the Mets turned around and within two days, made a splash of their own. Today, at the Winter Meetings, they have inked the 2022 AL Cy Young winner and also 2022 World Series champ, Justin Verlander, to a 2-year $86 million contract. Which now Makes the Mets the only squad in the league with two 38+ year old Aces. Each of whom have 3 Cy Young awards between them and a combined three total World Series Championships.
So on paper the Mets look like they got the better of the deal, but if you look at what happened with Max Scherzer in 2022, being on the DL and breaking down when the Mets needed him the most in the post season, is age truly a factor in pitching?
Verlander did defy that notion as he went 18-4 with the Houston Astros during the 2022 regular season, with a 1.75 ERA, 185 strikeouts and a 0.83 WHIP through 175 innings pitched. He didn’t seem to do as well in the post season posting a 2-0 record, but with a combined 5.85 ERA. If not for the explosion of the Astros lineup, the postseason may have had a different outcome. So can the Mets match that offensive explosion to overcome any late season letdowns? Well the hope as a Mets fan is that one Ace feeds off the other and they finally bring a ring back to Queens in 2023.
Once again the idea of having both Scherzer and Verlander in the Mets rotation is exciting, but Mets fans will not settle for another 101+ win season and then bow out in the first round of the playoffs, it must be better. Now not to put the pressure on these two work horses and assume they alone will take the team to the promise land, but maybe just maybe this opens the door for other offense minded signings to bolster a lineup needing a big jolt, big name bat. We will see what other tricks Mets ownership have up their sleeves.
In the meantime, us fans will dream about what these two Aces can bring every time they step ton the mound and hope we are hoisting a World Series Trophy in October.
All in All a good day to be Mets fan.