Once again, the New York Mets enter spring training with the hopes of their 2018 season hinging on the linchpin that is the starting rotation.
It’s a notion that has burned them for a majority of the last five seasons as the expected future faces of the franchise on the mound went down with debilitating injury after debilitating injury.
As of now, all five members of Generation K 2.0 are slated to make it to Opening Day. A healthy season could lift the Mets from middle-of-the-pack in the National League East to an actual division contender, but management hasn’t done anything yet to really prepare should injuries sweep through the rotation once again.
Here is what the Mets are preparing to enter 2018 with on the mound:
Syndergaard is far and away the No. 1 ace of this Mets staff as he looks to rebound from an injury-shortened 2017 season. With a chance to fully exhibit a changeup he developed for last year, the 25-year-old looks ready to go after admitting to feeling more flexible this winter.
2017 stats: 7 starts, 1-2 record, 2.97 ERA, 34 K’s
Injury history: Torn lat, missed 5 months (2017)
Projected 2018 stats: 16-7, 2.91 ERA, 220 K’s
The only consistently healthy pitcher last season, deGrom was the only Met to pitch in more than 120 innings.
2017 stats: 31 starts, 15-10 record, 3.53 ERA, 239 K’s
Injury history: Ulnar nerve surgery, missed last month of 2016 season
Projected 2018 stats: 14-8, 3.30 ERA, 235 K’s
Injuries have basically forced Harvey to re-learn how to pitch as he struggled to find any sort of velocity or control in a heinous 2017 season. With this being a contract year, he’ll have a lot to prove.
2017 stats: 18 starts, 5-7 record, 6.70 ERA, 67 K’s
Notable Injury history: Tommy John surgery (missed 2014 season), Thoracic Outlet Syndrome (missed final three months of 2016 season), Stress injury to right scapula (missed 2 months of 2017 season)
Projected 2018 stats: 8-7, 4.02 ERA, 125 K’s
His comeback from an extended recovery from Tommy John surgery did not go as well as expected. While health is a top priority, Wheeler has to find a way to wrangle in a fastball that is wild at times.
2017 stats: 17 starts, 3-7 record, 5.21 ERA, 81 K’s
Notable Injury history: Tommy John surgery (missed all of 2015, 2016), right biceps tendinitis and stress reaction in right arm during 2017 season (missed final two months of season)
Projected 2018 stats: 5-8, 4.93 ERA, 100 K’s
The most fragile of the Mets starters, Matz hasn’t been able to put a full season together since his call-up in 2015. But as the only lefty of the staff, he’s on the fast track to make the starting rotation.
2017 stats: 13 starts, 2-7 record, 6.08 ERA, 85 K’s
Notable Injury history: Partially torn lat muscle (missed 2 months of 2015 season), shoulder tightness (missed final 2 months of 2016 season), elbow irritation and ulnar nerve irritation (missed a combined 3 months of 2017 season)
Projected 2018 stats: 6-7, 4.30 ERA, 95 K’s
After starring as a debutant spot starter 2016 and with Puerto Rico in the World Baseball Classic prior to the start of 2017, Lugo’s arm basically gave out, sparking a mediocre sophomore campaign.
2017 stats: 8 starts, 7-5 record, 4.71 ERA, 48 K’s
Notable Injury history: Arm fatigue (missed first 2 months of 2017 season)
Projected 2018 stats: 4-4, 3.99 ERA, 70 K’s
Another one of the heroes of 2016 that helped the Mets to the Wild Card Game, Gsellman couldn’t put things together last year as the league figured him out.
2017 stats: 22 starts, 8-7 record, 5.19 ERA, 82 K’s
Notable Injury history: Strained hamstring (missed 7 weeks of 2017 season)
Projected 2018 stats: 3-5, 3.99 ERA, 70 K’s