Luis Severino believes he's found a solution to pitch-tipping woes from Yankees tenure

Luis Severino has seemingly discovered a big cause of his 2023 struggles as the start of Mets spring training games is on the horizon.

New York Mets Workout
New York Mets Workout / Rich Storry/GettyImages
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Luis Severino has seemingly discovered a big cause of his 2023 struggles as the start of New York Mets spring training games is on the horizon. New York’s new right-hander disclosed he feels that he was tipping breaking pitches with runners on base last season. As his 30th birthday approaches, Severino is sensing a fresh start and a return to his old self in Queens.

In need of new beginnings, Severino switched teams but not towns by signing a one-year, $13M deal with the Mets on Dec. 1, 2023. The only way for Severino to go in 2024 is up as he is coming off a career-worst 6.65 ERA in 18 starts with the Yankees last season. How can this be fixed exactly? In an interview with the New York Post's Jon Heyman, Severino himself said “This is the big leagues. I’ve got to clean it up.”

As for how the righty is cleaning up his pitch-tipping, Severino mentioned he watched plenty of film during the offseason. The two-time All-Star is heading into 2024 prioritizing a focus on executing pitches and not worrying about whether his glove is too high or too low.       

Luis Severino believes he's found what caused him to tip his pitches during Yankees tenure

Along with his pitch-tipping, Severino was plagued by an 11.50 ERA in the first inning. Of the 23 home runs Severino allowed last season, seven came in the first inning. Opponents slashed .375/.457/.688 in the opening inning off Severino in 2023.

Perhaps an opener may be an avenue first-year manager Carlos Mendoza will want to explore for Severino this spring. In innings four through nine last season, opponents hit .232 against Severino as opposed to .328 in innings one through three.

By joining pitching coach Jeremy Hefner, Mets fans are hoping Severino experiences an Edwin Díaz-like turnaround in 2024. A disastrous 2019 for Díaz under pitching coaches Dave Eiland and Phil Regan resulted in career-worsts with seven blown saves and 5.59 ERA for the Mets’ closer.

Since Hefner’s hiring prior to the 2020 season, Díaz has pitched to a 2.27 ERA and turned into the best closer in baseball. Díaz also won Trevor Hoffman National League Reliever of the Year Award in 2022 by converting 32 saves in 35 chances while pitching to a 1.31 ERA. Mets fans hope Hefner will be the magic potion for Severino as well.

Heading into 2024, the Mets’ starting rotation looks very different than a year ago with the departures of future Hall of Famers Max Scherzer and Justin Verlander at the trade deadline last year. For Severino, this gives him a chance to have a get-right season in a rebuilt Mets rotation and a second shot at pitching in the New York spotlight.

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