For the past couple of seasons, we’ve covered the “state of the union” for each team in MLB on our YouTube channel. And this year, we renew that series and examine the condition of each franchise. This article is our State of the New York Mets.
MAJOR ACQUISITIONS: JUSTIN VERLANDER
Justin Verlander is the reigning American League Cy Young award winner. Verlander’s addition to the Mets’ starting rotation makes for arguably the best one-two-punch in the sport with Max Scherzer. Both Verlander and Scherzer are on Hall of Fame trajectories. Scherzer will push Verlander, and Verlander will push Scherzer in a “friendly” competition. Justin Verlander is a hugely positive addition to a team ready to compete for a World Series crown.
SIGNIFICANT INJURIES: EDWIN DIAZ
The loss of Edwin Diaz in the World Baseball Classic has caused a lot of controversies. Diaz being out for the season is a significant loss for the Mets. Edwin is arguably the best relief ace in the game, and that’s extremely important in the hunt for a World Series. The Mets will have other options to close out games but none as electric as “Sugar” Diaz.
TOP PROSPECT: FRANCISCO ALVAREZ
Francisco Alvarez is a dynamic hitter. Power is the calling card of the 21-year-old catcher. Defensively, Alvarez is a liability for the Mets and may be required to change positions. However, there’s little doubt that the hit tool for Alvarez is real. The Mets will likely find ways to get Alvarez’s bat into the lineups where he will shine for New York.
Scouting grades: Hit: 55 | Power: 70 | Run: 30 | Arm: 55 | Field: 45 | Overall: 65
BOLD PREDICTION: PETE ALONSO HITS 50 HOME RUNS AGAIN
The Mets’ first baseman, Pete Alonso, has incredible power. Known as “The Polar Bear,” Alonso already had a 50-home run season under his belt. And while there was some minor regression on his part over the past couple of seasons, the power is real. For the Mets, Alonso is critical to their success. A healthy and productive Alonso gives the Mets their best chance to reach the World Series. So an impending 50+ home run campaign is on its way to Queens.
DIVISIONAL RANKING PREDICTION: 1ST IN NL EAST
To say that the Mets have a chance to win the NL East is an obvious statement. However, climbing to the division’s top will not be easy. Both the Braves and Phillies are stacked and capable of also taking the division crown. The lead at season’s end will likely be within five games for all three teams. The Mets have done a lot this offseason to better their odds, so they get the nod.
PITCHING STAFF GRADE: B+
The pitching staff for the New York Mets should be above average. Anchored by two future Hall of Famers in Verlander and Scherzer, the rest of the rotation leaves some questions but should be a positive staff overall. The loss of Jose Quintana until about mid-season is a big blow. Kodai Senga should be a solid addition, but until the season starts, it’s unknown exactly how his talents will translate from Japan. Again, losing Edwin Diaz is a significant blow to the bullpen. However, enough veteran guys have been around to block that the Mets can make some of the difference. Overall the pitching staff for the Mets will do the job necessary to battle for the top of the NL East and a subsequent postseason spot. At the beginning of Spring Training, the pitching staff may have looked much better than it does now, but it will still be well above average.
OFFENSIVE GRADE: A+
The New York Mets have an incredible offensive lineup. Each position in the Mets’ lineup could feature an All-Star caliber player. New York’s lineup will have a mix of contact, power, and speed. A few other teams will rival the Mets’ versatility in their lineup. New York will score a lot of runs in an effort to reach and win the World Series.
OFFSEASON GRADE: A
The Mets’ owner, Steve Cohen, has been the most aggressive owner in free agency since George Steinbrenner. Cohen will spend nearly half a billion dollars on the Mets’ payroll and subsequent penalties in 2023. That being said, just because a lot of money is spent doesn’t necessarily equate to a positive grade. But in this case, the money was invested wisely. The additions of Verlander, Senga, David Robertson, and the resigning of Brandon Nimmo are just some of the plus value moves made by the Mets. This was a great offseason for the Mets,’ who are hoping these moves translate to World Series success.
FRANCHISE GRADE: A
As stated throughout this article, the New York Mets have done a lot for this team over the past few years to become a contender. This offseason alone, the Mets’ have invested revitalization money to revamp the team. Usually, losing an elite-level pitcher like Jacob deGrom would leave a team reeling. Typically, a team that would lose out on a franchise-altering star like Carlos Correa would be devastated. But for the Mets’ these were only minor inconveniences. New York has an owner that is a fan first and foremost and an owner second. Cohen will invest as much capital as needed to become a World Series winner. And after all the moves that were made, it’s now on the players to take that support and push toward a World Series crown.
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