Justin Verlander, 40, has settled in with the New York Mets after signing a two-year, $86.66 million contract in free agency for 2022-2023. Just three months into his first season with his new team, trade rumors are swirling, and whether the parties know it or not, he’s still pitching.
On May 2 (ET), Verlander started a home game against the San Francisco Giants at Citi Field in Flushing, N.Y., and pitched seven innings of five-hit ball, striking out six and walking one to improve to 3-0 on the season.
His first win in nearly 40 days since May 22 against the Cleveland Indians. He was sidelined earlier in the season with a quadriceps injury, but he hasn’t had much luck. In five games in June (three quality starts), he had a 3.33 ERA and no wins.
In the end, Verlander recorded his 247th career win. He remains the major league’s all-time wins leader. While he has fewer games left in his career than the next three leaders, Zack Greinke (Kansas City Royals, 224), Max Scherzer (New York Mets, 208), and Clayton Kershaw (Los Angeles Dodgers, 207), the gap is still wide.
It’s hard to believe he’s only 40. In the first inning, he struck out Chase Peterson with a 94.7 mph fastball, then unleashed a 77.1 mph curveball on second baseman Patrick Bailey. In the second, he threw a 79.1-mph curveball to Tyler Estrada and induced a swinging strikeout with a slider. In the third inning, he threw a 96.1-mph four-seamer to J.D. Davis in the middle of a three-hitter. In the fifth, he threw a 76.8-mph curveball to Estrada for a strike.
With one out in the sixth, Verlander gave up a 77-mph curveball to Luis Matos to left center. It was a wild pitch and he was in trouble. But he struck out Peterson on a slider and induced Wilmer Flores on a line drive to third base with another curveball. In the seventh, he reached on a fielder’s choice and allowed a run to score, but struck out Brandon Crawford on a foul tip. His stamina was still there, as he topped out at 96.8 mph on the day.
In 11 games this season, he’s 3-4 with a 3.66 ERA, which is good enough. However, along with his teammate Scherzer, Verlander has recently been mentioned as a trade candidate by the American media. The Mets have been touted as a World Series contender because they are 37-46, fourth in the National League East and 10th in the wild-card race. They’re a whopping nine games behind the third wild card, the San Francisco Giants. They’re effectively in season-ending mode.카지노
Scherzer and Verlander also have a no-trade clause with the Mets. However, if they want to win the World Series, they can accept a trade. Scherzer already accepted a trade from the Washington Nationals to the Los Angeles Dodgers ahead of the 2021 trade deadline. Verlander also accepted a trade from the Detroit Tigers to the Houston Astros ahead of the 2017 trade deadline.
One month to go. It’s hard to know what the Mets will do. For both Verlander and Scherzer, pitching well is the “best sell”.