Written By: Sarah Muñoz
Editor: Katie LeLasher
New York Mets’ Francisco Alvarez, right, is tagged out at home plate by Cincinnati Reds catcher Curt Casali in the seventh inning of a baseball game in Cincinnati, Thursday, May 11, 2023. The Reds won 5-0. (AP Photo/Aaron Doster)
The 2023 MLB season is underway and the quarter mark is soon approaching. While some teams have flourished, both New York teams have yet to fully live up to the success they attained last season.
The Yankees currently sit in fourth place in a stacked AL East division, while the Mets have fallen into fourth place as well, despite slow starts from some of their division rivals, the Phillies and Marlins.
The New York Yankees finished the 2022 season in first place, winning 99 games and advancing to a playoff spot in the ALCS where they fell short to the reigning world champions, the Houston Astros. After making critical moves in the off-season such as signing two-time All-Star Carlos Rodón and bringing back the 2022 AL MVP, Aaron Judge, the Yankees have yet to see the success they had sparked in 2022, especially in the first half.
Similarly, the New York Mets finished 2022 winning 101 games while breaking multiple franchise records and fought for a wild card berth, entering the playoffs for the first time in six years where they eventually fell short to the San Diego Padres. Their off-season contained moves including bolstering the rotation by signing star Japanese pitcher, Kodai Senga and reigning World Champion, Justin Verlander.
So what has led to a shaky start for these two powerhouses early on in 2023?
Part of the issue for these two teams stems from the offense. It’s safe to say that the Yankees haven’t been living up to their Bronx Bombers nickname. As a team, they’re currently hitting .235 which is 22nd in all of baseball. On the other hand, the Mets are currently hitting .241 but even more alarming, slugging .389 as a team this season. Gaping holes in both lineups are being exposed, with really no current solutions.
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
The other issue at hand is pitching, particularly starting pitching. Lack of rotation depth and injuries have plagued both teams thus far. The Yankees starting rotation has been pretty shaky outside of ace Gerrit Cole. Additionally, the two-year all-star Carlos Rodón has yet to throw a meaningful pitch for the Yankees.
The Mets also are facing unique struggles in their starting pitching, posting a 4.78 earned run average, ranking 25th in the league. Although having been ranked as one of the top rotations entering the 2023 season, injuries and inconsistency have hampered the veteran starting rotation.
It’s no secret that playing in New York comes with sky-scraping expectations. The pressure will surely be on the front offices of both teams to make aggressive moves at the August 1 trade deadline.