Former Mets ace denies alleged ‘Diva’ label from ex-teammate

MLB: Chicago White Sox at New York Mets, justin verlander
Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

Justin Verlander got the chance to set the record straight regarding an alleged disparaging comment that came from a former teammate of his on the New York Mets.

The former three-time American League Cy Young award winner addressed reports that an anonymous Mets player called him a “diva” for his behavior and antics in the locker room, which Verlander did not meet with malice.

Mets: Justin Verlander “Diva” comments deemed false by the former champion

Jon Heyman of the New York Post was able to extract Verlander’s take on the alleged dig. The nine-time All-Star cleared the air in the matter and declared the incendiary comment to be false:

“Everyone I spoke to said, ‘JV that’s not the case,'” Verlander told Heyman.

Simple and plain. Verlander shot down those rumors as well as additional false comments that he openly scolded the organization for a substandard analytics department. However, Verlander openly admitted that he could have been a better teammate during his tenure with the Detroit Tigers.

Verlander identifies his rigid approach to success as a potential culprit for locker-room clashes

While his career in Detroit was illustrious, the 2011 AL MVP’s path to achieving such historic greatness and accolades came with tunnel vision. Verlander told teammates “don’t get in my way,” if they weren’t as dedicated as him.

Verlander only lasted 11 games for the Mets in 2023 before getting sent back to the Houston Astros midseason. His 138 ERA+ and 1.145 WHIP were in line with his dominant career peripherals but his 6-5 record wasn’t.

The Mets pairing wasn’t as fruitful across the board as hoped for, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that Verlander damaged the locker room in the process. He had high hopes for the Mets during his time with the team but has since come to terms with the way things played out.

Verlander’s reputation avoided a stain in this case. As it appears, there’s no reason to have hard feelings.

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