Mets Monday Morning GM: 3 decisions defining Billy Eppler’s tenure so far

New York Mets v Cincinnati Reds
New York Mets v Cincinnati Reds / Dylan Buell/GettyImages
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The seat is getting a little hotter for New York Mets general manager Billy Eppler. No job in baseball is ever secure. He was hired to eventually get fired or step away in shame because of some mutual decision.

Eppler’s Mets played well in 2022 only to slowly run out of steam near the end. The 2023 version has been less so with many of the things that went right last season going wrong this time around.

So far under Eppler, these three decisions are shaping our perception of him and defining his tenure.

1) NY Mets GM Billy Eppler’s tenure has been defined by signing aging aces

Max Scherzer was amazing for the Mets in 2022. He’s turning things around in 2023 following an underwhelming start to the year. Justin Verlander, meanwhile, has had a lot more trouble gaining our trust. A leadoff home run in his most recent appearance against the Toronto Blue Jays was the death sentence for him in a game where the Mets scored exactly as many runs as they started with.

Good, bad, or indifferent, the massive free agent signings of Scherzer and Verlander put Eppler’s stamp on the Mets. They’ve let multiple star or at least quality pitchers walk since he was hired. Those decisions have had some mixed results and over time will certainly change even more.

Because of these gigantic salaries paid to Scherzer and Verlander, it’s easily the two biggest decisions to shape how we will perceive Eppler now and in the future. They could’ve gone with lesser quality and more quantity. The Mets could’ve chosen length of contract over the total AAV.

If Scherzer and Verlander don’t get the job done this year or even next depending on the status of the former, the Mets will undoubtedly need to rethink paying two pitchers so much money and ignoring other holes on the roster. A $20 million pitcher and a couple of really good relievers would probably make them a better ball club than one Verlander.