There were a lot of great things that came from the game last night between the Mets and division rival Atlanta Braves in Suntrust Park. It was a matchup featuring Steven Matz for the Mets, who was coming off a very solid performance but only 5 innings. Yesterday, they really need him to be able to go deeper into the game.
It was Kevin Gausman on the hill for the Braves. He is considered the ace of the staff since Mike Foltynewicz is currently on the shelf with an injury.
Just a couple of days before the season began, the New York Mets ended the contract talks with ace pitcher Jacob deGrom by signing him to a contract extension. The deal is for five years and replaces deGrom’s current contract.
The deal is worth $137.5 million and includes an opt-out after 2022 and a full no-trade clause. There is a $32.5 million club-option for 2024 that could bring the value of the deal to $170 million. deGrom’s deal is tied with Johan Santana for the 14th biggest deal given to a pitcher, according to Baseball Reference, per Mark W. Sanchez of the New York Post.
Jacob Degrom was even better than he normally is last night, and that’s a tough order. He entered the night with 30 straight starts allowing 3 runs or less, which is a new MLB record. Ironically, the last team to score 4 runs on Degrom were the Miami Marlins, almost a year ago to last night exactly.
We all know the problems the Mets lineups had last season giving Degrom run support. The Mets changed their tune last night, coming out of the gates with hot bats and keeping with that theme throughout the night.
Jason Vargas started game 2 of the 3 game set against the division rival Miami Marlins. 2 years ago, Jason Vargas was a 20 win pitcher. However, the second half of his 2017 campaign was not nearly as good as the first, so Sandy Alderson thought he got Vargas at a bargain price. After that season, Jason Vargas earned a 2-year deal worth $16 million dollars. Sadly, Vargas had a very up and down year last year for the Mets.
In spring training of 2018, Jason Vargas broke his non-pitching hand. His 2018 campaign wasn’t great out of the gate. He started the year on the DL (now IL) and when he came back it was not a pretty sight. Vargas’ first 12 starts in his second season with the Mets resulted in an 8.75 era with a 3.00 WHIP. A lot of fans wondered how the Mets could continue to allow this awful pitching display to take the mound every 5th day. But in Varags’ second half of the 2018 season, he somewhat rebounded, lowering his WHIP under 1.50 and dropping his era all the way down to a 2.45 in his last 8 starts. He made just 20 starts for the Mets and finished the year with a total of a 5.77 era and a respectable 1.41 WHIP.