Jacob deGrom Deal Was Never A Doubt

By Rich Mancuso/ Sports Editor

Was there any doubt? Of course there was with the Mets and Jacob deGrom. Because deGrom offered minimal reason for optimism to get this done before Opening Day, and with the Mets always a subject of speculation, there was more room to be a pessimist when it came to reaching this five-year contract extension of $137.5 million and a no-trade clause.  

For now the Mets can move on. Jacob deGrom was rewarded for a Cy Young Award season of 2018. The Mets would be put in that category of fools to not have made this deal. Next to Tom Seaver and Doc Gooden, Jacob deGrom is in that category of the franchise pitcher.

It’s not Zack Wheeler or Steven Matz we are talking about. Neither is it Noah Syndergaard. The Mets next project is to teach Syndergaard when to keep his mouth shut before handing their right-hander a contract as rewarding.

Now everyone can leave a show and tell workout up in Syracuse and begin the season Thursday afternoon down in Washington D.C. The focus now is to begin the season with optimism which commenced when Brodie Van Wagenen came on board as the GM in October.  The optimism continued with a challenge to improve and the GM delivered with new sailors aboard the ship.

And there is no doubt about this deal for Jacob deGrom. It had to be done. Just like the deals for Chris Sale, Justin Verlander, and  Blake Snell, the Al Cy Young Award winner, this deal had to be done and two days before the start of this anticipated 2019 season.

In the long run, the 30-year old deGrom is expected to be the Mets’ ace in the rotation. In the long run, and with a long term deal, there are risks. Jacob deGrom had his share of elbow and arm problems. Teams are more skeptical about signing long term and lucrative contracts to pitchers as opposed to position players.

But in this case, Jacob deGrom was worth the risk. He was also rewarded for that 1.70 ERA and 269 strikeouts that had the baseball world in a buzz last season.  He was rewarded for that commitment to finish his career as a New York Met. Of course, and more importantly, Jacob deGrom did this for financial security and for his family.

The Mets did not need this to drag on into the season. They did not need the headache and the headlines of negativity of not signing Jacob deGrom to a contract extension. In other words, and no matter the history of the Mets and handling contracts, this is a commitment of a new regime in the front office to get the job done.

It is about winning now and beyond for the New York Mets. Jacob deGrom, assuming he stays healthy, is a part of that plan for the next five years. This is not to say that deGrom will duplicate that Cy Young Award season because doing that may be asking too much.

This is about winning baseball games. The Mets have a chance to win and keep games close when Jacob deGrom gets the baseball.

A well done deal for the Mets and Jacob deGrom. He is the ace and will get the Opening Day start Thursday afternoon.  And of course there was never a reason to doubt this deal was going to get done.

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