Luis Severino heads across town for fresh start

Veteran right-handed pitcher Luis Severino is signing a one-year, $13 million contract with the New York Mets after spending eight seasons with the crosstown rival Yankees, ESPN’s Jeff Passan reported on Wednesday. 

The signing is an interesting one for the Mets. 

Severino was one of many Yankees with a rough 2023, going 4-8 with a 6.65 ERA in 18 starts while dealing with a myriad of injuries a majority stake something that has been a near-constant in his career.  

Meanwhile, the Mets are coming off a disappointing season of their own. 

They finished fourth in the National League East despite wielding the largest payroll in all of Major League Baseball, partly thanks to injuries to veteran pitchers Max Scherzer and Justin Verlander; so the decision to spend money on Severino is a head-scratcher. 

When he wasn’t dealing with an injury last season, Severino struggled mightily to avoid giving up runs in bunches, allowing at least five runs in fewer than four innings on six occasions.  

Despite Severino’s extensive list of previous injuries, he is still just 29 years old and did show occasional flashes of the dominant stuff that earned him Cy Young votes in 2017 and 2018. 

Over his first two starts in 2023 he allowed two earned runs in 11 1/3 innings and in August posted consecutive starts of 0 ER and at least 6 2/3 innings. 

After the Mets traded Scherzer to the Texas Rangers at the 2023 deadline, the future Hall of Famer relayed at his introductory news conference that then-Mets general manger Bill Eppler told him the team was “looking to compete in 2025 and 2026, but 2024 would be a transition year.”

Adding an injury-prone veteran who got shellacked nearly as often as he didn’t last year certainly indicates a World Series isn’t the short-term goal in Queens. 

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