2 legitimate and 1 unjustified reason for Mets fans to panic

Colorado Rockies v New York Mets
Colorado Rockies v New York Mets / Sarah Stier/GettyImages
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The New York Mets sit at 17-18. They've won three of their last 12, and three of the four series were against the Nationals, Tigers, and Rockies. They played the Nats and Rockies at home and lost four of the six games they've played against those teams.

To say the Mets are playing bad baseball right now would be an understatement. They're not pitching well or hitting well. They've been losing consistently to some of the worst teams in baseball.

Fortunately, it's May 9, and there's plenty of time for a turnaround. The Mets are healthier than they've been all year with both Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer available. Could they provide a spark? The season depends on it. For now, there are legitimate reasons for fans to worry about the 2023 New York Mets, but there're also some complaints I see on social media that I believe are completely unjustified.

Legitimate reason to panic: The NY Mets have gotten nothing out of their aces

The Mets pitching has been disastrous. It all starts at the top. Justin Verlander hurt himself in Spring Training and had been out the entire season before coming back in Detroit. He allowed two first inning home runs but settled in nicely and looked mostly fine in his Mets debut.

Max Scherzer on the other hand has been more concerning. We all know about the suspension that cost him a couple of starts. If that wasn't bad enough, his results when healthy have not been good at all. He has a 5.56 ERA through his first five starts and 22.2 innings of work. He's already allowed six home runs while his walk rate has skyrocketed (4.0 BB/9) and his strikeout rate has plummetted (7.9 K/9).

Could this be an age thing for the 38-year-old? Could he be pitching injured? Could this just be a slow start? Mets fans hope that's it, but age and injury concerns are incredibly real. If Verlander is not healthy and Scherzer isn't Scherzer, the Mets are in deep, deep trouble. They need both of these pitchers to be aces, much like the 2022 Mets needed deGrom and Scherzer to be the co-aces.