A dubious Mets record we can expect the team to challenge breaking this season

The Mets are more than halfway to the record through 22 games.
New York Mets v Atlanta Braves
New York Mets v Atlanta Braves / Todd Kirkland/GettyImages

It took less than 20 games in the 2024 New York Mets season for the team to use 20 pitchers. They’re now at 22 in 22 games. It’s an astonishing accomplishment for a ball club that didn’t even have an optional relief pitcher on the Opening Day roster. Quick DFA’s for Michael Tonkin and Yohan Ramirez opened up the revolving door on the roster for arms to quickly go up and down from the minor leagues.

This is kind of what baseball has evolved into. It wasn’t until the late 1990s when the Mets would more regularly use 20+ pitchers in an entire year. The 1996 season is the last time they used fewer than 20, concluding that year with only 17 different pitchers used.

What’s the record for this? We need to go back to the 2021 season.

The Mets are well on pace to set a franchise record for the most pitchers used in a season

The 2021 Mets used 42 different pitchers. They used 33 in 2022 and 37 in 2023. Those are the third and second-place finishers.

If you remember the 2021 Mets well, you may recall a couple of reasons why they asked more pitchers than ever before or again to take the mound.

Healthy starting pitching wasn’t a strength of this club. Marcus Stroman had a team-leading 179 innings pitched with Taijuan Walker in second at 159. Jacob deGrom, who missed essentially half of the year, was in third with only 92.

The Mets got starts from those three and several others including Tylor Megill, David Peterson, and trade deadline acquisition Rich Hill. Carlos Carrasco missed the first half of the season. Joey Lucchesi had a stretch of starts, too.

The numbers really went up with the high number of relievers used. A grand total of 18 men would toss fewer than 10 innings for them. Four were position players. One was Noah Syndergaard making short starts at the end of the year.

Equally as notable yet not surprising is how few of those pitchers from 2021 have stepped on the mound this year for the Mets. Only Megill, Edwin Diaz, Drew Smith, and Sean Reid-Foley have lasted this long. We also have Peterson and Lucchesi who have yet to toss a big league inning.

For those curious, the record for the fewest Mets pitchers used in a season is 13. They did this in 1963, 1971, and 1976. Even in the shortened seasons, it took more than a baker’s dozen to get through the year. Brace yourselves even more and some random Mets jerseys in three years.

Nick Tropeano. Trevor Hildenberger. Stephen Tarpley. Hang their jerseys in the rafters of obscurity.