The last five years have been full of ups and downs for the New York Mets. They made their second half surge in 2019 that inspired tons of confidence only to miss the expanded playoffs in the shortened season of 2020. They won 101 games in 2022 and looked like they'd be even better in 2023 only to fall flat and win just 75 games.
The same can be said about how the Mets have done in free agency. Some hits, and a lot of misses. For every Aaron Loup, Adam Ottavino, and Taijuan Walker are some truly awful signings. These are the worst of the worst in the last half-decade.
5) Justin Verlander
Losing Jacob deGrom was obviously a big blow to this Mets team trying to compete in 2023, but replacing him with Justin Verlander felt like an upgrade. Sure, deGrom is the best pitcher on the planet when healthy, but he hadn't been healthy in years. Verlander on the other hand, had just won a Cy Young with the Astros and seemed to be only getting better despite being 40 years old.
The Mets had some rough injury luck right out of the gate and Verlander played a big role in that, as he missed the first month of the season with a teres major muscle strain. He pitched pretty well when healthy, but the time he missed wound up being crucial, and he had some duds in big games (notably one in Atlanta).
With the Mets out of contention, they traded Verlander away to the Astros in the deal that sent Drew Gilbert and Ryan Clifford back to Flushing. This could turn out to be a blessing in disguise, but for now, it's nothing more than a disappointment as the Mets got just 16 starts from Verlander in what was supposed to be at least a two-year deal.