The New York Mets have had a productive offseason, adding pieces that have improved their 101-win team from last season. Adding starting pitchers such as Justin Verlander and Kodai Senga will headline this offseason, and bringing back major vital parts to the team, such as Edwin Diaz and Brandon Nimmo, was also massive.
However, a move that hasn't been talked about as much that I believe will be the most underrated move of the offseason, not just for the Mets but maybe in all of baseball.
The Jose Quintana addition will be the Mets most under-the-radar move this offseason
The former St.Louis Cardinals pitcher, Jose Quintana, signed a two-year, $26 million contract on December 7th by the Mets. Quintana had a very efficient season last year for the Pittsburgh Pirates and St.Louis Cardinals and finished the season with a 2.93 ERA overall. He got traded from Pittsburgh and posted a 2.01 ERA in 12 starts with St.Louis. He didn't strike out that many guys, but what was impressive was he kept the ball in the park with a 0.4 homer per nine innings rate.
Even though he had a great season last year, what does he bring to the Mets, especially this rotation? Well, for starters, he adds a lefty to the rotation. With Verlander, Scherzer, Senga, and Carrasco, they were right-hander heavy, and it's good to have that middle-of-the-rotation lefty to spread everything out.
I look at the contract Quintana signed, and I feel it is a way more team-friendly deal than the guy who Quintana is replacing, old friend Taijuan Walker. Walker signed a four-year, $72 million contract with the Philadelphia Phillies this offseason. While money isn't a problem for owner Steve Cohen and the Mets, the 2-year deal for a reliable Quintana is more beneficial than a four-year deal worth over 70 million dollars like the contract Walker signed.
The most critical aspect that Quintana brings is what I just mentioned, which is that he is reliable. In a rotation where your two aces are over the age of 38, you need reliable guys in the back end of your rotation. In Quintana's career, he has made at least 29 starts and has pitched 165+ innings in eight of his eleven seasons. The best ability is availability, and Quintana brings that to this Mets team.
All Mets fans are hoping that Quintana recreates the season he had last year, and when it's all said and done, I believe we will look back at this signing and say that it was crucial to this team.