2. The New York Mets will show their age
The Miami Marlins have a big advantage over the New York Mets.
I wrote about this before, all of this hype about the New York Mets will end up being for nothing. It's the New York Mets, they NEVER do as good as you expect. It never happens. When they won their last World Series (back in 1986), the belief was that this was the beginning of a dynasty...not so much. They didn't even make it back to the World Series until 2000.
They had a trio of elite pitching prospects in the 1990's and that never worked out. They seemed to be on the way to winning it all in 2006, and didn't make it past an 83 win team in the playoffs. This still looked like the beginning of a run of successful teams... but they didn't make the playoffs again until 2015. Hell, that 2015 pennant winning team seemed like the beginning of a dynasty and that didn't even come close to happening. The rule with the Mets is to never expect them to contend, because they will find a way to lose.
Steve Cohen is a great owner, but this team is headed for a big decline. Fangraphs projects 91 wins, which is ironically close to what I predicted for them. That's definitely a step down from the 101 wins they had in 2022, but still puts them in playoff position. What if they played worse than that? Considering the team it is, expecting failure is much more realistic than expecting them to succeed. I mean they weren't even supposed to lose to the San Diego Padres in the opening round of the playoffs last season.
Justin Verlander is 40 years old. It's unprecedented for someone his age to still be so good. I suspect he won't be as good as he was in 2022 and maybe aging will finally hit him. It's already hitting his fellow ace Max Scherzer, who is 38 years old. Scherzer pitched a full season career low of 145.1 innings (aside from the shortened 2020) in 2022. He also saw his strikeout rate continue to decline, a sit has annually since 2019. It's odd to me that this is flying under the radar.
Their rotation depth is already tested and closer Edwin Diaz is injured for the season. RF Starling Marte is 34 and in decline; CF Brandon Nimmo is injury-prone and DH, 3B and LF look like holes to me. This is a team that overachieved in 2022 and will be disappointing to its fans in 2023.
NEXT: A team will be calling the Miami Marlins for starting pitching at the Trade Deadline...