BY JOE DESALVO
The New York Mets open spring training camp for
the 36th year in Port St. Lucie and there’s no doubt
the vibe is at an unprecedented level.
Here are three among many reasons for the
optimism of a third World Series championship that
For the first time in four years, there’s no COVID
pandemic or MLB lockout interfering with the Grapefruit
League schedule or limiting stadium capacities to 20% like
it did in 2021.
Highly popular Mets owner Steve Cohen continued his
spending spree in free agency by committing more than
$475 million in contracts for nine players, including threetime
Cy Young winner Justin Verlander, left-hander Jose
Quintana, Japanese star right-hander Kodai Senga and
right-handed reliever David Robertson. The Mets also retained
All-Star closer Edwin Diaz and outfielder Brandon
Nimmo with mega-agreements, as well as a new four-year
deal for second baseman Jeff McNeil, the 2022 National
League batting champion.
The Mets are determined to bounce back from last
season’s swoon — losing the NL East lead to the Atlanta
Braves in the final weekend of the regular season — despite
a 101-61 second-best franchise record — and then
getting beaten by the San Diego Padres in the three-game
Wild Card Series at Citi Field.
Another unfulfilled quest to win a World Series crown
since 1986 is in the rearview mirror for the Mets and Manager
Buck Showalter. Here’s what’s ahead for the Mets
during this year’s spring training:
The team opens its 30-game Grapefruit League schedule
on Saturday, Feb. 25, with split-squad games — hosting
the Miami Marlins at Clover Park and visiting the Houston
Astros in West Palm Beach. >>
8 Port St. Lucie Magazine
NEW YORK METS
Mets ace right-hander Max Scherzer will be reunited with former Tigers teammate Justin Verlander, who signed a two-year, $86.66 million free-agent deal
in December. In addition, the Mets added a few other starters and relievers to the pitching staff, and retained All-Star closer Edwin Diaz.
First full slate in four years and new faces
should make it a signature one for Mets