The New York Mets are going to have to go into the next offseason looking to continue to bolster their roster. Adding a nice free agent and improving their pitching is something they’ll look to focus as the only three MLB-caliber starters on their roster for 2021 will be Jacob deGrom, Noah Syndergaard, Steven Matz, and Michael Wacha. They could look to add two starters as Matz and Wacha may not cut it as a 4th and 5th for an elite pitching staff. Looking at the arms on the FA market, there’s one arm that stands out as a perfect fit for the Mets.
Great Pitching Lower Price
Jake Odorizzi is a very good pitcher, with a 3.51 ERA, 3.36 FIP, 4.33 xFIP, and 3.94 xERA. While his xFIP is pretty high, his xERA shows he’s more of a sub-4.00 ERA pitcher which is something that nowadays is a lot better than it used to be. With a 4.3 fWAR and 10.08 SO/9 ratio, he had a stellar 2019. His 2020 will decide how much he’s truly get paid, but another season like this would still not net him Gerrit Cole money. looking more like a 4 year $80 million deal which would be pretty good for a pitcher who’d be 31 and doesn’t rely on a blistering fastball.
Projects Very Well For the Future
Most people see his track record and say that he isn’t going to pan out in 2020, with 2019 being a one-hit-wonder. While this can be true because we never truly can predict the future, we can look at his stuff and how much he overachieved to look at how he’d project. His 2018 was pretty mediocre, but he changed what he did in 2019 to succeed more, totally scrapping his slider that batters were hitting pretty well. He had also cut down the spin on his Split-Finger to make it dance a little more as he threw it, which resulted in batters only slugging .346 instead of .426, which gave him a reliable groundball pitch that could also generate a whiff 27.2% of the time.
His whiff % on his fastball also went up to 30%, and by having increased to whiffs and also seeing him change his pitches up dramatically to be more effective shows he may have success in the future as well.
Giving Fans Hope
When the New York Mets make a big move, it doesn’t just help their team but it also helps a fanbase that has felt as if the Mets have been too cheap. If the New York Mets can bring in a surefire starter to improve their pitching staff and make them scary for hitters, it’ll give them a lot of hope for the future of that squad. A rotation in 2021 of Jacob deGrom, Noah Syndergaard, Jake Odorizzi, Marcus Stroman (if they retain him), and Steven Matz. Yes, the rotation has only one left-hander, but that’s not an issue if the righties are really good. That alone is an elite rotation, which can pair with a solid bullpen and lineup for a potential playoff berth in 2021.
Looking ahead is always a prediction analysis, nothing is certain in these types of things, but if New York wants to replace Wheeler with a surefire replacement and replenish this staff next offseason, there aren’t many at his price that I’d take over Odorizzi.