After the Mets Jacob deGrom’s efficient seven-inning outing today, they have a choice to make. Start him Sunday, or save him for All-Star Game.
For the Mets, what do you do?
Do you encourage Jacob deGrom, the best pitcher on the planet, to renege on his decision to skip the All-Star Game Tuesday, his fifth and normal day to pitch – pitch him on a Sunday for a few innings – or do nothing, allowing deGrom a few “days off” to spend leisurely with his family?
Author’s Postscript 7/8/2021 3:15 ET
With comments still pouring in, we know now it’s a done deal and deGrom is not going to the All-Star Game, but I have to say this – I’m disappointed.
Spending time with his family, I get that – but I’ll bet anything that Steve Cohen would have flown Jake and his family to Denver Tuesday morning on his private jet, returning them to their home anytime day or night in a limousine provided by the Mets.
I hope not for Jake’s sake he doesn’t regret his decision down the road, given that his next pitch anywhere at any time could be the end of his career, sidelining him from all future All-Star Games.
Nevertheless, Jacob deGrom is a baseball God, and I wish he and his family happy and joyous days ahead next week.
As in all cases with the Mets and deGrom, the team will accede to the will of deGrom, a stature he has earned.
Beginning tomorrow and following today’s 4-3 come from behind win (box score) against the first-place NL Central Milwaukee Brewers, the Mets face the bottom of the same division Pittsburgh Pirates in a four-game series at Citi Field, with deGrom having thrown only 85 pitches.
While the Mets and deGrom can wait to see how the series goes, there is the travel factor and changing time zones involved if deGrom decides to make the trip to Denver.
Mets vs. MLB’s Spectacle
As a spectacle, the MLB All-Star Game is a highlight of any season, one that will feature the face of baseball, players like Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Shohei Ohtani in an exhibition game that means nothing except for fans across America to have a glimpse at players they’ve heard about, but have not seen.
Jacob deGrom is a player of the same or better caliber than either, and it would be a boon to baseball if he were there in Denver.
But as always with these things, the decision facing the Mets and deGrom is complex.
The Mets lead in the NL East standings is a treacherous 4.5 games with the sleepy but always capable Braves and the charging Nationals waiting to pounce on any sign the Mets are faltering.
The other side of the argument, of course, says there are still more than 75 games left in the 2021 regular season, so who’s to say the Mets can’t withstand another of many challenges they’ve faced this season?
In a nutshell, here’s the way I see it.
Mets And The Weight Of Change
With the ousting of the Wilpons in favor of Steve Cohen, the culture of the Mets changed automatically to a franchise that once again is in the forefront of baseball.
The Mets record today supports that, but there needs to be a “charge” put into it.
Pete Alonso will be a participant in the Home Run Derby, and he can be the one to do it, just as he did by winning the whole thing in 2019.
But the idea of seeing Jacob deGrom on the mound for one inning on Tuesday is irreplaceable when you consider he is having a year that supersedes the greatest of the past, including Bob Gibson, Ron Guidry, and even (excuse me) Sandy Koufax.
How easy it is for us to say, though, that Jacob deGrom should fly to Denver in lieu of spending a couple of days off with his family?
I know what the baseball world, though not necessarily the Mets, would like to see him do, but you know what…
Whatever he decides is fine with me…but wouldn’t it be nice if…
Here’s What Readers Are Saying…
Bart Rosenberg Or do neither. Let him recharge for the second half.
Roger Brown I’d say pitch him on Sunday. They’re in first. All-Star game doesn’t mean anything when you’re trying to win a division.
Michael Oneil Not pitching or traveling to the game. His focus is on the season, not the exhibition game. He’s putting the team before himself again. Very selfless and thought out.
Hector Caban Santiago Start him on Sunday we need to win games the all-star is just a show
Jim Russell Efficient “7” innings. And he should pitch Sunday and go home afterward
Patty Edwards As much as he deserves to be in the All-Star game, we need these wins. We don’t have that much of a lead.
Kathleen McEntee-Lawlor Start him on Sunday. I could be biased though…I have tickets to Sunday’s game! In all seriousness though, we need him more than the All-Star Game does.
Andy Holtmann As the only Met representative, I say let him start/pitch an inning in the All-Star game. He has MORE than earned recognition. If you think about the inning like you would a normal bullpen session during your off days, I can’t see how this would push any envelopes. Though knowing his injury scares earlier in the season, there may be something else we’re not privy to that’s factoring into this decision.
Closing Published Comments And Final Thoughts
Readers shift to the “saving” deGrom for the pennant race, pitching him on Sunday, and letting him enjoy his family for a few days. Who can argue with that?