The New York Mets clearly had some issues with their starting rotation. Of the six men that were supposed to start the season, only one of them didn’t have any injury issues: Rick Porcello. The other five had to miss some time or were affected by different ailments to some degree.
Jacob deGrom had to depart a start after two innings with a hamstring issue, Michael Wacha suffered shoulder inflammation, Noah Syndergaard didn’t even make a pitch because he underwent Tommy John surgery in the spring, Steven Matz also had some shoulder problems, and Marcus Stroman suffered a calf strain and later opted out of the season.
Only deGrom and Matz are under contract for next season. Syndergaard is, as well, but won’t be an option for the New York Mets for the first couple of months, maybe even around the All-Star break of 2021, while he recovers from the elbow surgery.
Thankfully (well, hopefully), the Mets will have a third healthy arm slotted in for next season, as rookie left-hander David Peterson impressed in 2020. While he also had to miss some time because of shoulder inflammation, he was good and consistent in most of his starts, and proved that he is ready to handle major league pitching.
“I love to compete,” Peterson recently said to MLB.com’s Anthony DiComo. “I think that’s one of the biggest things that I wanted to prove to myself and to everyone else, that I belong up here.”
A successful season for the Mets’ rookie
For the season, Peterson had a solid 3.44 ERA and a 4.52 FIP in 49.2 innings. He had some issues with walks (4.35 BB/9) but showed that he can navigate through a lineup by using a low 90s fastball, a good slider and a developing changeup.
“David Peterson’s an excellent pitcher. The stuff that he has and what he’s been able to do this year has proven he’s a big leaguer,” closer Edwin Diaz said.
Another voice that came out impressed with Peterson is catcher Robinson Chirinos. “He’s getting better and better,” Chirinos said. “The first time I caught him, his stuff was good, but it was not consistent. … After that, he started getting more [over] the plate with his stuff. And his stuff is really good.”
In a year in which the Mets do not appear to have too many names in their starting rotation, they are counting on Peterson to produce the same kind of performance he had this year in 2021.