Carlos Carrasco and Taijuan Walker had completely different seasons for the 2021 New York Mets. Walker was looking like the steal of the offseason early on, earning his way to the All-Star Game as the club’s lone representative. Meanwhile, Carrasco missed most of the season due to an injury from the preseason. When he did return in late July, he wasn’t good at all.
Walker wasn’t very good either in those days of watching Carrasco struggle. He ended up finishing the season 7-11 with a 4.47 ERA. This came from a 7-3, 2.66 ERA first half and a 0-8, 7.13 ERA second half.
Carrasco only saw action after the All-Star Break. He was just 1-5 with a 6.04 ERA in his 12 starts. Several of the early ones felt more like rehab appearances. A few others looked like batting practice.
Neither of these Mets pitchers gave the club a reason to fully trust them next year
As far as trustworthiness goes, I don’t think either did enough in year one with the Mets to receive much faith from the fans or front office. Carrasco never could figure things out with his lengthy injury as the biggest reasoning for his struggles. Walker’s second half collapse was absolutely epic, leading many to question whether he’s capable of surviving a full season as the productive pitcher he was early on.
Both should have a starting rotation spot for the Mets in 2022. Deciding which of the two is more trustworthy won’t be easy. Each has some major faults.
However, if we go back to the time when the club added each to the roster, there was excitement. The same reasons we liked them in the first place remain. The difference: we now have reason to think things won’t be so good.