Marcus Stroman has had a quite eventful tenure with the New York Mets since being acquired on July 28th, 2019. When he came to Queens, many were puzzled given the team at the time was down in the standings and had little farm talent to begin with. Nevertheless, the Mets dealt two promising prospects for the All-Star pitcher.
At that time, Mets fans had become accustomed to strikeout-heavy flamethrowers such as Jacob deGrom, Noah Syndergaard, or Zack Wheeler. So, when Stroman’s earned run average sunk from 2.96 with the Blue Jays to 3.77 with the Mets, fans began to sour, despite suspect defense being the reason for the numbers decrease.
Things grew even tenser for the New York native in 2020 when injuries held him out at the start of the season before he ultimately opted out. After that, it seemed as if Stroman and the Mets were due for a breakup as he was set to hit free agency.
Instead, Stroman elected to take a chance on himself and Queens in accepting the team’s qualifying offer. Returning on the one-year deal, Stroman can set his own market and hit it following the season.
Now, it may only be three starts into the 2021 season, but Stroman is dealing with the best of them. And just like that, the narrative around Stroman is changing as he is quickly winning over Mets fans.
Stroman’s dazzling 2021 numbers with the Mets
During his tenure with the Toronto Blue Jays, Stroman started 129 of 135 games, posting a 3.76 earned run average and struck out 7.2 batters per nine innings. His numbers at 28-years old had the Mets comfortable in trading for him and having him replace Wheeler in the rotation, who was due for free agency.
Except, nobody could have expected a stretch of pitching by Stroman that he has had to start the season. He has won all three games he has started, posting a 0.90ERA. Stroman has even given up fewer hits and home runs than deGrom, as the duo have both pitched 20.0 innings.
What separates Stroman and deGrom is their reliance on defense. Obviously, the two-time Cy Young winner deGrom dominates opponents with his 15.7 strikeouts per nine innings mark. Whereas Stroman relies on strong defense behind him, with Francisco Lindor at shortstop and James McCann behind the plate playing massive roles.
Stroman’s passion for the game
What do Pete Alonso, Dominic Smith, and the entire Mets core have in common that make them so beloved by fans? It is the passion and emotion they show for the game night in and night out.
Stroman’s passion for the game has always been bright, yet under the New York lights, it is brighter than ever. He is having fun hitting his grove on the mound the big apple, and off of it, making amazing fielding plays too.
Clearly, the 2021 season is more than just any season to Stroman. He is shining in New York, putting up elite numbers, and is having a blast doing so.
Stroman’s impact not going unappreciated
Coming into the season, the Mets knew they would be without Noah Syndergaard to start. Then, Carlos Carrasco got hurt, and the bullpen got off a slow start to the year, putting more pressure on Stroman to perform well. To this point, he has performed well to say the least.
He has taken definitive control of the number two role in the starting rotation. He is putting up ridiculous numbers and is finally being embraced by the fan base. Thus, barring one question…
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When the 2021 season comes to a close, will the Mets be discussing an extension with Marcus Stroman?