Mets Monday Morning GM: 3 free agent pitchers for the price of 1 Justin Verlander or less

New York Mets v Houston Astros
New York Mets v Houston Astros / Carmen Mandato/GettyImages
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We all wanted Justin Verlander on the New York Mets roster. As soon as Jacob deGrom had his deal with the Texas Rangers, it was the only move for the Mets to make.

It hasn’t gone so well. Verlander is 2-4 with a 4.50 ERA through 9 starts with the Mets this season. Disappointment doesn’t even do it justice too how poorly it has gone for him and the team as a whole. That’s a word reserved for ordering a 20 piece nugget and only finding 19 and a half.

With the full benefit of hindsight, what could the Mets have done differently? The $43.3 million Verlander is earning this year is ridiculously high and could have been spread out among at least three other pitchers to help improve the Mets, right?

1) NY Mets could have signed Chris Bassitt for half the Justin Verlander price

Rather than find the best bargain free agent starting pitcher signing, let’s stick with something realistic. Chris Bassitt was with the Mets last season. It makes sense for him to have returned on a similar deal to the one he eventually signed with the Toronto Blue Jays. They were willing to go three-years and give him $63 million. This comes out to a $21 million AAV which is significantly less than the $43.3 million Verlander is taking home in 2023.

Bassitt has gotten hammered in several starts this season, but he has also had more brilliant outings than Verlander thus far with the Mets.

Maybe it was the bad final impression Bassitt left with a loss in the postseason which gave him some added desire to move on. The front office may have felt the same way. Bassitt wasn’t so much replaced by Verlander as much as he was by Kodai Senga and Jose Quintana. Both of them were cheaper signings, partly due to the Mets’ choice to bring in JV.

Let’s say the Mets re-signed Bassitt to the same deal he got from the Blue Jays. That gives us $22.3 million left to spend. Let’s throw it at some bullpen arms.