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Harvey says he is aiming for a 20-win season.
- Johan Santana
- Matt Harvey
- Jon Niese
- Shaun Marcum
- Dillon Gee
Midseason call-up: Zack Wheeler
Johan Santana was on a roll in the beginning of 2012, culminating in a 134-pitch no-hitter, the first in Mets history.
But after that no-hitter, he was never the same pitcher, and the Mets shut him down for the season to recover.
This season, manager Terry Collins has already claimed that he wants Santana to start Opening Day. Despite the severe shoulder injury, Santana is still capable of pitching at a high level. Now that he appears fully healthy, Santana will rightfully be the No. 1 starter all season.
Matt Harvey proved in his brief midseason call-up last season why he has consistently been a top prospect for the Mets.
Considering he is an ace in the making, as well as aiming for 20 wins this season, he will secure the No. 2 spot.
Jon Niese is quietly one of the more consistent left-handed pitchers in baseball. He finished last season 13-9 with a 3.40 ERA in just under 200 innings. The 26-year-old must improve on his 22 home runs allowed, especially at pitcher-friendly Citi Field, but expect the same type of production and innings pitched from the reliable Niese.
Shaun Marcum was signed recently for a one-year, $4 million deal with the chance to earn $4 million more in incentives.
In 21 starts, Marcum was 7–4 with a 3.70 ERA and 109 strikeouts in 124.0 innings. The 31-year-old has a career 3.76 ERA, and is a very capable back-of-the-rotation starter.
He will be a very productive No. 4 pitcher.
Lastly, Dillon Gee claims to be 100% healthy, following season-ending surgery in 2012 to remove a blood clot in his throwing shoulder.
On paper, Gee only finished 6-7 with a 4.10 ERA. But a poor first two months inflated those stats. Gee’s strikeouts were up and his walks were down. He was primed for a breakout year in 2012, and now that he is healthy again he should be just as successful as the last starter in a competitive rotation.
Zack Wheeler, a top-10 prospect according to MLB.com, should impress greatly in his first spring training. But due to arbitration rules, if Wheeler makes the roster before midseason, he would be eligible for arbitration a year earlier than expected.
Wheeler is major league-ready. But the cash-strapped Mets will wait until midseason to debut him, thus affording another year of Wheeler’s services. He will not be on the Opening Day roster.
However, if Santana has a successful first half, it is possible he may be used as trade bait to a more legitimate contender for prospects. This would open a hole for Wheeler to fit in perfectly.
Regardless, Santana will lead the charge in a rotation that is fairly talented top to bottom.