2. New York’s starting pitching is in flux
Mentioned earlier, the Mets have plenty of free agents, most of them on the starting pitching side. deGrom is the key name, but Chris Bassitt was a key starter and was a valuable starter for New York after the trade from Oakland and Taijuan Walker was a serviceable back-of-the-rotation arm for New York over the last two seasons. A hefty amount of innings are hitting the market for the Mets.
And if there’s anything the Los Angeles Dodgers or San Diego Padres have shown us, it’s that you truly need six-to-eight starters in your organization to go through the rigors of the regular season. Someone will disappoint and could be replaced in the rotation, someone will, unfortunately, get hurt, and someone will take a step forward and emerge as a potential long-term starter.
In a world where New York retains deGrom, you start with two top-of-the-rotation starters, but it remains questionable. Carlos Carrasco had a solid rebound season, but he's a free agent after next season and is also 34 years old. David Peterson and Tylor Megill have both flashed great stuff, while Jose Butto made his major league debut. All three should be on the outside looking in on the rotation next season and serve as great depth.
In a world where deGrom leaves, New York would face an uphill climb to fill their rotation while also amassing quality and depth. After deGrom, the Mets would be looking at retaining Bassitt, San Francisco's Carlos Rodon (excellent in 2022, but littered with injuries), Los Angeles' Tyler Anderson (seemed to unlock something with the Dodgers), and a bunch of guys who profile closer to back end starters.
So while New York continues to develop arms like Blake Tidwell and Matt Allan to one day be in their major league rotation, the Mets have to turn to free agency to maintain the success of their starting rotation. That free agency checklist should start with retaining Jacob deGrom.