After a long fighting summer, the 2021 New York Mets season has concluded; the Mets do not find themselves in a playoff position this year; however, there is a lot to reflect on.
The New York Mets finish 8 games below .500, with a 77-85 record, 3rd in the National League East and 6th in the final National League wild card standings. The Mets employed a season of various ups and downs. A season in which started and cruised in 1st place in the National League East, then took a nose dive after the all-star break. In September, the Mets sat 4.0 games back of the second wild card spot. This ground-gaining semi-comeback was impressive and promising, following the return of some key players, in Javier
Baez and Francisco Lindor. There obviously was not enough fuel in the tank to continue to chase a playoff berth. Now we reflect on what 2021 really looked like and where it can go from here. Let’s start with the guys on the bump?
2021 New York Mets Pitching Overview and the future.
Jacob deGrom; a Mets gem of an arm, with high season expectations and a stellar start to the year before complications occurred. The mighty right-hander kicked off the season in style, followed by an induction to the 10-day injured list on May 11th for minor tightness. July 12th he was named to the National League All-Stars; a few days later, went back to the 10-day injured list, only to be upped to 60 days, ending his season. He deGrom finished with a 7-2 record, 146 strikeouts over 92 innings and a 1.08 ERA. Imagine what that could have been with a full season? Possible Cy Young? deGrom was still up in the late 90s, early 100s in velocity; looked strong and steady. A healthy deGrom in 2022 will give us 15+ wins.
Starter, RHP Marcus Stroman went 3 games below a .500 record, finishing the year 10-13 with a 3.02 ERA and 158 strikeouts over 179 innings pitched. Stroman looked strong, primarily gave decent innings and was able to be a lifeline to the Mets, in their brief first place stint. This was a key starting piece in the rotation and will be a key piece in 2022 to attempt a Mets playoff run. Stroman will be a free agent at the end of the year; let’s see if the Mets offer!
Starter, Rich Hill, seasoned southpaw, another rotation guy who looked polished and dependable this season; this guy would have been a go-to in any given playoff pitching situation if the Mets were in the postseason mix. His experience and repertoire were appreciated, especially in the absence of deGrom. Hill went 7-8 with 150 strikeouts, a 3.86 ERA over 158.2 innings. Hill will be 42 years of age in 2022 and a free agent. Do the Mets take a shot at another year or 2? For purposes of the rotation, I’d say shoot!
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The New York Mets will face some battles in the off-season. Polishing the bullpen will be one of them, with relievers like Jeurys Familia, Brad Hand, Aaron Loup and Heath Hembree entering free agency. Edwin Diaz shut the door with 32 saves, that’s a given, that’s a keeper. A Bullpen replenish or upgrade will be needed, and this is not necessarily a bad thing! The starting rotation will always be in question, Rich Hill, Marcus Stroman, and Noah Syndergaard will all be free agents. Do you re-sign Stroman and Syndergaard to complement a healthy deGrom? Do you let Hill walk and pursue a hot-southpaw from Toronto, in Robbie Ray? We’ll follow up with the talks of spot-fillers as the postseason comes to an end!