Showing Zack Wheeler the door and 3 other Brodie Van Wagenen decisions continuing to age poorly

Some of the decisions by Brodie Van Wagenen continue to hurt the Mets.
Championship Series - Philadelphia Phillies v Arizona Diamondbacks - Game Five
Championship Series - Philadelphia Phillies v Arizona Diamondbacks - Game Five / Harry How/GettyImages
1 of 4

When the name Brodie Van Wagenen hits the eyes of New York Mets fans, there’s a certain sting. The pain level varies. Some feel like a bright light gently hit them a little too strongly after a nap. Others will insist the initials BVW stir a sense of battery acid washing over their retinas.

Wherever you fall, you probably thought about him on Monday.

Three full Mets seasons have gone by since Van Wagenen was employed by the team. Several of his decisions have actually turned out better than anticipated, but a few more, some by no fault of his own, continue to age poorly. Let’s look at those ones continuing to haunt the Mets and award each with a number as to how much blame he should get.

1) Letting Zack Wheeler walk in free agency

The obvious lingering mistake by BVW and inspiration is the decision to let Zack Wheeler leave after the 2019 season. The longtime Mets pitcher dealt with injuries in 2015 and 2016 which took him completely out of action. Finally returning to the mound healthy in 2018, he showed a ton of promise following a miserable 2017 campaign where even Jacob deGrom looked human.

Wheeler was 12-7 with a 3.31 ERA in 2018 and followed it up with an 11-8 and 3.96 ERA showing the year after. The talent outweighed the results at times. When it came to deciding on his future, the Mets didn’t see enough to even compete to re-sign him.

The Philadelphia Phillies thought differently of him. A five-year deal worth $118 million turned out to reward them with an ace. Wheeler has helped the Phillies get to a World Series and NLCS in back-to-back seasons now. The runner-up for the Cy Young in 2021, this is an elite Mets mistake mostly because of how out-of-his-way BVW seemed to go to assure everyone Wheeler wasn’t as good as his contract said.

With Wheeler getting a three-year deal worth $126 million this week to stay with Philly, Van Wagenen’s infamous quote returned.

Blame Level for BVW: 8 out of 10 – The contract the Phillies gave him was ridiculously high at the time and there was never a chance the Wilpons would’ve paid him. The dismissiveness of this quote was the Scarlet Letter BVW will have to wear.