Despite a shaky 6.61 ERA on the season, lefty David Peterson may have more to offer in the Mets’ rotation than both Carlos Carrasco and Jose Quintana.
If you’ve been watching the New York Mets all season, then you know it’s been a down year for LHP David Peterson.
After posting a career-best 3.83 ERA in 2022, Peterson has fallen off a cliff down to 6.61 this season. His WHIP has ballooned from 1.33 to 1.67. There’s no question it’s been a struggle all around.
So why would I rather have him in the Mets’ rotation over veterans Carlos Carrasco and Jose Quintana?
David Peterson has a good lefty fastball that plays well
At 6-foot 6, 240 pounds and only 27 years of age, Peterson is a big, strong kid with a solid lefty fastball. Averaging 92.7 MPH on his four-seam fastball this season, that puts him ahead of lefty notables like Eduardo Rodriguez (92.2, 2.64 ERA), Justin Steele (92.0, 2.56 ERA) and Clayton Kershaw (91.2, 2.55 ERA).
Righties, on average, tend to throw harder than lefties, so at 6-foot-6 with a long reach, Peterson’s fastball plays particularly well when he attacks the strike zone. He also has a nasty sweeping slider with cutting action that tries to mimic greats like Randy Johnson and Jon Lester.
On the whole, Peterson is an easy ‘fix’: He just needs to take a page out of Kodai Senga’s book from last night.
Senga, who has been struggling with his control and command all season long, finally stopped nibbling last night. In eight innings of fantastic work, he walked just one batter from the impressive, young Arizona Diamondbacks.
Senga allowed just four hits and one run, racking up 12 strikeouts along the way. Three or four of those strikeouts came on fastballs right down the middle. If you mix up your pitches in between, sometimes it’s okay to simply attack the zone with your heater.
Peterson needs to take note. Get ahead in the count, don’t walk opposing hitters. Success will follow.
David Peterson has been pitching much better of late
After an extremely rocky start to the season, Peterson has clearly settled down in his last two starts.
In 10 innings of combined work, Peterson allowed just one total run to the San Francisco Giants and Milwaukee Brewers.
His stuff looked sharp, but again the walks were too high. Peterson was successful despite walking six in those 10 innings of work.
If he would simply trust his stuff and get ahead in the count, he could get back to his 2022 form the rest of the way out.
Both Carrasco and Quintana have very low upside
Sure, it’s perfectly okay to give Jose Quintana his starting opportunity coming off injury, but Carrasco is the one who should be moved to the bullpen if a shake-up is necessary.
Carrasco is 36 years old and having one of the worst seasons of his career. He sports a brutal 5.94 ERA and 1.57 WHIP.
But his numbers are similar to Peterson’s, you say?
Yes, but the differences are in age and stuff. Peterson could potentially be a key part of the Mets’ future, going forward. Big, strong lefties with good stuff are particularly difficult to find. Peterson just needs to trust himself, and trust his stuff.
Behind Justin Verlander, Max Scherzer and Kodai Senga, David Peterson could be an X-Factor in the Mets’ second-half run at a National League Wild Card spot.