Suffice it to say that Steve Cohen takes little comfort in dodging a $185 million bullet as Jacob deGrom needs surgery from Tommy John.
The dire deGrom news from Texas was announced on Tuesday, but three days later, Cohen’s $345 million The Mets had been defeated by the Braves in Atlanta and started the weekend in three games under .500 in fourth place in the National League East.
Of course, the talk radio Yahoos are screaming that Cohen is starting to mess things up at Citi Field, but while mistakes and miscalculations have been made, the blame for this Queens standoff lies with others than the manager’s office. It’s not Buck Showalter’s fault Daniel Vogelbach was an absolute failure as the primary DH, and it’s not his fault Max Scherzer and Justin Verlander, his two rumored $40+ million aces, gave up 10 runs in 8 2/3 innings combined against the Braves, and it is certainly not his fault that that is the case Pete Alonso was hit in the wrist with a faulty Charlie Morton pitch in Atlanta and will now be lost for almost a month.
If you’re looking to blame the Mets’ current misery, you have to start with the player development department, which did a terrible job developing the starting pitchers. Before deGrom, in 2010, Mike Pelfrey became the last native Mets frontman to win 15 games in a season. Because of this failure, Cohen had to swallow hard and give in Scherzer has signed a three-year, $130 million deal in 2021 and then $86.7 million in another two years to the 40-year-old Verlander after deGrom transferred to the Rangers. And unfortunately, the starting pitching draft continues as there is no one in the system this year who can come close to providing rotational assistance (although 6-5 right-hander Mike Vasil has made great strides at Double-A Binghamton).
Even before deGrom’s departure, Mets GM Billy Eppler saw this starting pitching problem coming. But he inexplicable made no move to re-sign Chris Bassittthe last wins and innings leader (who received a three-year, $62 million deal from the Blue Jays) and invested $75 million instead Japanese import Kodai Sengawho apparently can only pitch every six days, and one more $26 million for Jose Quintana who had to pause the whole year due to a rib injury through no fault of his own.
In fact, Eppler has been on a losing streak since last year’s trade deadline, when he dealt a useful middle reliever to the Pirates with Colin Holderman for Vogelbach and to the Giants for Darin Ruf with JD Davis (.152, 0 homers and 7 RBI in 28 games). For some reason, Eppler’s analysis geeks love Vogelbach, even though he can’t run, can’t play position, and has a lifetime batting average of .216. So it was up to Showalter to continue to play the guy as he appears in the daily analysis charts while taking on the brunt of the relentless media critique. To make matters worse, Showalter is in the media to give newcomer Mark Vientos more playing time, another out-of-position man who hit .162 with 12 strikeouts and a walk in 39 plate appearances on Friday.
In the absence of a true DH, Showalter toyed with using the pitch there to give his regulars a “half day” rest — like he did against the Braves on Thursday night when Francisco Alvarez was slotted into the No. 2 hole , hit two home runs and drove in three runs. But Alonso’s injury numbers complicate matters further and the lack of a backup shortstop prevents him from beating Francisco Lindor.
But let’s be honest: once Edwin Diaz has torn his knee The Mets would be in serious jeopardy at the World Baseball Classic this season. The inconsistency of starting pitching has taken a huge toll on the bullpen, in which Showalter has acted without a second left-hander since his tenure as manager.
Maybe Cohen didn’t realize it in the spring, but this is a deeply flawed Mets team that has relied on two fragile, aging aces to make it through October. The bench is pitifully thin and, aside from David Robertson and Brooks Raley, the bullpen is mostly mediocre with no high-octane arms. They needed another power racquet before the close last year and instead have 270 pounds of their own in Vogelbach.
If I’m Cohen, I wouldn’t necessarily be firing people at this point, although I would certainly ask Eppler, “How did I get a fourth-place finish under 500% with $345 million, and what do you and your analytical experts suggest?” about that to correct?”
It’s a crazy, crazy world
As the Mets keep crashing and burning Vogelbach as their DH did you have Gary Sanchez suddenly caught fire in San Diego. After a 1:6 success in just a few minutes three games for the Mets, Sanchez was waived and claimed by the Padres and hit four home runs in his first eight games for them. On Friday, he posted a .310 batting average with nine RBIs in nine games for San Diego after being used by the manager in the cleanup area Bob Melvin. “He’s there for a reason,” Melvin said. “I really feel like maybe he felt at home here as opposed to other places where he fought for his job every single day, every single shot.”… Very calm, the Marlins’ Luis Arraez climbed above .400 last week. It was the last player to top .400 in 60 games played, according to the Elias Bureau Chipper Jones in 2008. The Braves Hall of Famer did not drop below .400 until June 19, eventually reaching .364 for his first and only batting title. Unlike Chipper, Arraez, who topped the American League last year with a .316 average for the Twins, is a slaphitter who makes constant contact, rarely strikes out and can potentially stay above .400 all summer. … Elbow injuries are an epidemic in baseball. DeGrom was the last pitcher to require surgery from Tommy John. And then there’s the Nationals Stephen Strasburg Tommy John’s surgery in 2010 was followed by a series of debilitating injuries, most recently nerve damage in his neck which doctors now say could prevent him from throwing again. But the most amazing thing here is according to a report by the Washington Post baseball writer Jesse DoughertyThe Nationals did not purchase disability insurance for the seven-year, $245 million renewal contract they gave Strasburg in 2019.
https://www.twincities.com/2023/06/10/bill-madden-buck-showalter-isnt-too-blame-for-the-mess-that-is-this-345m-mets-team/ Buck Showalter is not to blame for the mess this $345 million Mets Twin Cities team is making