Is Sandy Alcantara becoming better than Jacob deGrom?!
By Neil Raymond
Is Sandy Alcantara becoming better than Jacob deGrom?! It sounds shocking and maybe even ridiculous to some, but what if I can prove it?! Let me start off by saying that I’m not claiming that Alcantara is actually better than him already. I’m making an argument that he’s becoming better than him. Sandy Alcantara is actually leading all starting pitchers in the Majors with 3.9 WAR and at this rate could be headed for a 7 WAR season. That’s AMAZING (no pun intended). One of our writers already wrote about how Alcantara reminds him of a legend…I think that he may even be better than the best starting pitcher in the game at the moment.
Sandy Alcantara may be the best starting pitcher in the game.
Sandy Alcantara is having a phenomenal season. He has the aforementioned Majors-leading 3.9 WAR with a 1.68 ERA/2.96 FIP and 8.1 K/9 and 2.7 BB/9 in 13 games and 91.1 innings. Alcantara is pitching more innings than anyone else in the Majors and is a workhorse that is rare in today’s game. Keep in mind that there are park adjustments that are done to calculate WAR.
Jacob deGrom hasn’t pitched at all this season, last season he had a 1.08 ERA/1.24 FIP with 14.3 K/9 and 1.1 BB/9 in 15 games and 92 innings pitched. Jacob had a 4.4 WAR. On the surface it appears that deGrom is still better than Alcantara. In roughly the same number of innings, deGrom has 0.5 more WAR. There is a caveat however… that’s deGrom prior to his injury. Jacob has a stress reaction in his right scapula.
How bad is deGrom’s injury? Let’s look at the info from the above link:
"A stress fracture to the scapula is not a common injury, but it is something we see every once in a while with pitchers due to the repetitive overhead throwing motion. deGrom likely tweaked his mechanics as he was coming back from the forearm and elbow injury that ruined his 2021 season. Even if this was unintentional, it can be just enough to put added stress on another body part, in this case the scapula. This injury is usually an overuse injury, meaning it happens over time. deGrom is also dealing with inflammation surrounding the scapula, and that could explain the tightness he experienced.That UCL is still compromised. And yes, I’m aware that it was a partial tear that he says has fully healed with rehab. There just aren’t many pitchers who have been able to successfully avoid Tommy John surgery. deGrom’s elbow fell strong before the shoulder flared up, but that doesn’t mean it can’t still lead to future problems."
Reading the above makes me wonder if it’s possible that deGrom might need TJS or that he simply won’t perform as good as he used to. Keep in mind that he’s 33 and will be turning 34 on Monday. Players usually are close to declining at this point. I don’t wish him any health issues and hope that he will be fine, but it’s a valid concern. Sandy Alcantara is 26 and is just entering hid prime.
Jacob deGrom is a future Hall of Famer and arguably the best starting pitcher in New York Mets history. Unfortunately, age and health are likely putting his best days behind him. Sandy Alcantara is currently pitching better than any other starting pitcher in the Majors, and will seriously challenge deGrom for the “best in the Majors” title upon the latter’s return from injury.