The New York Mets suffered a brutal blow as Jacob deGrom signed a massive five-year deal to head to the Texas Rangers. The Mets lose their ace and a franchise icon in the process. This is rough information for Mets fans to digest, but it's comforting knowing they have the richest owner in the sport who's proven he's willing to spend unheard-of amounts of money to make this team better.
The Mets still need to sign two pitchers. Ideally an ace-level pitcher and a mid-rotation arm as well. There aren't so many options available that fit the bill.
Here's a Mets rotation prediction for the 2023 season:
1) Justin Verlander
2) Max Scherzer
3) Chris Bassitt
4) Carlos Carrasco
5) David Peterson
The Mets reportedly have Justin Verlander "front and center" on their radar now after losing out on deGrom. With Carlos Rodon as the only ace-level option available, I expect the Mets to land one of the two. Verlander seems like the most realistic as it'd take less term to sign him.
Verlander will join his former teammate with the Tigers Max Scherzer at the top of the Mets rotation. They're both older, but still dominant. He just won the AL Cy Young while Scherzer had a 2.29 ERA in 23 starts as a Met.
There're risks with this as they're older and have both dealt with injury issues recently, but when they're on the field they've shown no signs of slowing down. Hopefully that's the case for 2023 as Verlander will be 40 on Opening Day while Scherzer pitches in his age-38 season.
I expect the Mets to retain Chris Bassitt. The market for a third starter is pretty bare, with Bassitt and Kodai Senga as the only really solid options. Senga will have a larger market than Bassitt, and Bassitt has said he enjoyed his time with the Mets. If both sides want to get it done, it'll get done. He had a great season for the Mets and I expect him to be good in the future as well.
Rounding out this rotation are Carlos Carrasco and David Peterson. Carrasco has had an iffy tenure as a Met but they picked up his club option and he will be in the rotation for 2023. Peterson looked really good as a starter for the Mets this past season, hopefully, he can take another step up and solidify himself as a solid third or fourth starter. You can do a lot worse than this pair rounding out a rotation.
This Mets rotation is not as good as when they had the best pitcher on the planet on it. However, it could be a lot worse. Justin Verlander just won the Cy Young award and who knows, maybe he'll be healthier and better than deGrom in 2023.
Losing deGrom hurts badly, but knowing you have an owner willing to do what it takes to win is very comforting.