To call the 2023 New York Mets season a disappointment would be an understatement, it has been a disaster of all disasters. They're almost 20 games out of first place in the NL East and sit fourth in the division and may end up being sellers rather than buyers at the trading deadline which is almost two weeks away.
It is crazy to think about the Mets being sellers at this year's trading deadline considering the fact they spent over $500 million during free agency and opened up the season as a favorite to not only win the NL East but possibly get to the World Series for the first time since 2015. You can blame the miserable month of June they had that pretty much derailed their season, but during that month, these three things that were supposed to be the strength for the team have been anything but that.
1. Mets starting pitching
Yes, the Mets were able to snap their four-game losing streak after defeating the LA Dodgers on Sunday in extras, and Kodai Senga and Max Scherzer pitched well in the second half, but this starting pitching that we thought was a strength has been anything but that. It has just not been there for this ball club which has mainly been why the Mets are in fourth place in the NL East.
For starters with Max Scherzer, I get that Scherzer pitched well in his first start of the second half going seven scoreless against Los Angeles, but he has not been able to pitch well enough on a consistent basis. Diving into Mad Max's numbers, his ERA is just number four at 3.99 and before his last start against the Dodgers, his two starts before that were not as sharp. He gave up five earned runs against the San Diego Padres on July 9 and four earned runs against the Arizona Diamondbacks on July 4 along with three solo home runs. As a matter of fact, Scherzer has given up four runs or more in four of his 10 starts this season and has given up 18 home runs all so far after only giving up 13 all of last year. I get he has eight wins on the season, but not all of them have been pretty.
And if you think Scherzer has been disappointing, how about his former teammate during their time in Detriot, Justin Verlander? Verlander who was coming off a CY Young Award-winning year with the Astros in 2022 has not pitched like the Mets would have hoped when they gave him $86 million in the offseason.
Verlander has only three wins on the season to five losses and has yet to find any consistency in his first year in Flushing. His walks are up as he's walked a total of nine batters in his last two starts combined with six of them coming in just one start and has only gone more than seven innings in three of his outings and has seen his ERA balloon to 5.40 in his last two outings. It is safe to say that both Scherzer and Verlander have not been as sharp in 2023 as the Mets would have hoped.
Other starters too for the Mets this season who came in with high hopes have been prettyy bad too. Veteran Carlos Carrasco who was coming off winnings 15 games a season ago, has an ERA north of five and yes, did finish the first half strong, he has still yet to find any consistency this season when the team needed it the most. Other starters too like Tylor Megill and David Peterson who the Mets finally thought have finally turned a corner have done anything but that with Megill having a lost season resulting in him being demoted back to the minor leagues with his ERA also north of five and perhaps the biggest issue this season has been his walks as he's walked 39 batters in his 71.1 innings pitched. Peterson has also been a bit iffy in 2023 but has pitched okay as of late but still has a bloated ERA over six. Starting pitching has just not been there for the Mets this year.