Mets can't overcome early deficit, and it's now time to shift gears with Carlos Carrasco
The veteran right-hander has a 10.24 ERA in his last eight starts. Plus, the Mets are taking a look at another star pitcher from Japan
What’s Up with the Mets? ⚾️
The Mets lost to the Angels 5-3 at Citi Field on Saturday (box)
RHP Carlos Carrasco was ineffective again, allowing five runs in only 1.2 IP before being knocked out of the game
The Mets bullpen did contribute 7.1 IP of two-hit ball in relief of Carrasco, but the Mets offense could not catch up, scattering seven hits and five singles on the night
The Mets went 1-for-10 with runners in scoring position and left eight runners on-base
The Mets are now 9-16 in August, 15-23-4 in series overall, 10-9-1 in series at home, 22-56 when the opponent scores first, 5-55 when trailing after 6 innings, 2-59 when trailing after seven innings, 3-65 when trailing after eight innings, 4-4 vs the AL West, 10-47 when scoring three or fewer runs, and 17-23 since the All-Star Game
The Mets were among ten teams to recently scout star Japanese RHP Yoshinobu Yamamoto (New York Post)
Injury Updates 🏥
1B Pete Alonso (HBP in the neck/head on Saturday) passed concussion protocol and should be able to return to the lineup soon
Prospect Watch 🔎
C Kevin Parada (No.5 Prospect, Single-A Brooklyn): 2-for-5, RBI, R
C Ronald Hernandez (No. 20 prospect, Single-A St. Lucie): 3-for-5, 2B, RBI
1B JT Schwartz (Double-A Binghamton): 3-for-5, 2 2B, 3 RBI, R
INF Ronny Mauricio (No. 4 prospect, Triple-A Syracuse): 3-for-5, 2B, RBI, 2 R
Today’s Game 🗓
Match-up: Mets (59-71) vs. Angels (63-67)
Where: Citi Field — Flushing, NY
Starting pitchers: LHP David Peterson (3-7, 5.59 ERA) vs. RHP Griffen Canning (7-4, 4.61 ERA)
When: 12:05 PM EDT
Where to Watch: Peacock
It’s time to make a change with Carlos Carrasco… ✍️
When the Mets picked up Carlos Carrasco’s $14 million option before the 2023 season, it seemed like a bargain in a market with inflated prices for mid-rotation pitchers.
Carrasco was coming off a 2022 campaign during which he went 15-7 with a 3.97 ERA over 29 starts, 152 IP. As such, there was little reason to think at $14 million Carrasco wouldn’t at least pitch to his contract, if not exceed that value and be one of the market’s great bargains over the course of the 2023 season.
But instead of being a bargain, Carrasco’s so badly underperformed his contract that he’s served as the prime example of what went so horribly wrong for the Mets rotation in 2023.
For the 11th time in 20 starts this season, Carrasco failed to give the Mets five innings on Saturday night and for the fifth time, failed to even get into the fourth inning. The Angels mauled Carrasco for five runs before he could even record the sixth out of the game and Mets manager Buck Showalter was forced to pull the string on the 35-year-old early once again as his performance put the Mets in another massive hole, one they could not overcome yet again in a 5-3 loss at Citi Field.
Carrasco’s ERA is now 6.80 for the season. He has a 10.24 ERA over his last eight starts, during which he’s allowed 55 hits and 11 walks against only 33 strikeouts in 23 innings during that span.
Perhaps last night was the final straw for Carrasco, as Mets manager Buck Showalter seemed noncommittal about keeping Carrasco in the rotation for the remainder of the year.
“Billy and I and Jeremy have been talking about a lot of things about the pitching staff,” Showalter explained after the game. “As we get into September, I’m sure that’s something we’ll talk about.”
Look - Carrasco is a lovable guy given his story, his charity work because of his story, and for the way he has carried himself, especially during this extremely difficult year where it’s fair to question how much he has left in the tank at this point in his career.
But it’s been time for a while the Mets made a change. I’ve wondered for almost two months how long the Mets would keep Carrasco in the rotation, especially once they decided to sell at the trade deadline. There’s little reason to be giving Carrasco more starter innings when he’s essentially non-competitive out there and Joey Lucchesi is in the minor leagues starting for Syracuse.
The only reason Carrasco might still be here is because the Mets could be planning to slow down or even pull Kodai Senga from the rotation altogether given his workload. If that’s what they’re thinking, they could either go to a six-man rotation with Carrasco and Senga in it along with Lucchesi, or they could simply choose to replace Senga with Lucchesi if they decide to pull the plug on Senga, meaning they will still need another starter.
But even if they decide to shut Senga down, that doesn’t mean Carrasco should continue to pitch, either.
The Mets could also consider promoting Mike Vasil from Triple-A, who appears to have turned a corner in his development there, and take a look at him for four to five starts in the big leagues the rest of the way.
Vasil has allowed just five runs in his last 25.2 IP for Triple-A Syracuse and has a 2.79 ERA in August, for what it’s worth.
The point is, there are options and those options shouldn’t all include Carrasco given his performance and the number of innings he is taking away from others the club simply needs to learn about - for better or for worse - over the final month or so of the season.
Around the League 🚩
The Mariners won their ninth game in a row with a 15-2 blowout win over the Royals - Teoscar Hernandez had six RBI and both Julio Rodriguez and Mike Ford each drove in a pair of runs in support of Logan Gilbert, who threw seven innings for the win
The Rangers kept pace with the Mariners and snapped their eight-game losing streak with a 6-2 win over the Twins thanks to a four-run ninth inning to break the tie
The Astros kept pace with both he Mariners and the Rangers in the AL West with a 9-2 win over the Tigers - Houston remained one game behind both Seattle and Texas in the AL West
The Marlins second half struggle continued with a 3-2 loss to the Nationals in Miami as David Robertson allowed two runs in the ninth to drop the club back to 65-65 on the year
The Red Sox got even with the Dodgers at Fenway Park with an 8-5 win over their 2018 World Series opponent. Adam Duvall highlighted the offense with a three-run homer
Tyler Glasnow and the Rays shutout the Yankees 3-0 to even up that series - Glasnow threw seven innings of one-hit ball to silence the Yankee offense