Have Sympathy For Rick Porcello
Like you and me, Rick Porcello grew up loving the Mets. Unlike you and me, he was not only talented enough to make it to the majors, but he was also able to win a World Series and a Cy Young.
Due to that pedigree, there were teams still interested in him when he became a free agent despite his having the worst ERA in baseball last year. Having his first real chance at free agency in his career, he decided to turn down better offers to fulfill his childhood dream of pitching for the New York Mets.
Porcello was getting his chance to realize his dream. Unfortunately, it’s been a nightmare for him.
Through nine starts, he’s 1-4 with a 6.07 ERA. He’s given up the most hits and earned runs in the league. Opposing batters are hitting .318/.356/.436 off of him. He’s only averaging 4.2 innings per start.
Now, the Mets haven’t done him many favors. For example, given how Porcello is your classic pitch to contact sinkerball pitcher, you need to optimize your defense with him on the mound.
When he had Luis Guillorme and Andres Gimenez up the middle in his August 5 start, he was terrific allowing one run over seven. It was the same alignment up the middle for his August 16 start when he allowed four over six against the Phillies.
We’ve also seen him struggle without that strong up the middle combination. For example, last night, Robinson Cano was at second for his poor start where he allowed five earned over four. In his first Mets start, he allowed seven runs (six earned) with Cano and Amed Rosario up the middle against the Braves.
It must be so frustrating to have success and return to the form where you were considered a bona fide middle to front end starter to getting your brains beaten in with a lackluster defense behind you.
It has to be worse when this is happening to you when this was your dream. Perhaps more than any pitcher in this Mets rotation, he wanted to win a World Series and celebrate with the fans. After all, he’s one of us.
Sadly, he’s not well respected by his fellow Mets fans. They see his putting up similarly poor numbers than he did last year. In some ways, he’s become a poster boy for Brodie Van Wagenen’s dismantling of this once great Mets rotation.
After all, Porcello got a chunk of the money that didn’t go to Zack Wheeler. Wheeler has been great in Philadelphia whereas Porcello hasn’t been so much in New York.
As a fan, if we were allowed in the park, we’d boo him mercilessly. His performance has warranted it even though he’s not always been put in a position to succeed.
Overall, you’re allowed to be frustrated with him. If we were at the park, you’d be well within your right to boo him. Still, we should all realize this has to be painful for Porcello.
Porcello wanted to be a New York Met more than anything. His dreams are becoming nightmares. Certainly, we can identify with that, and because of that, we should have some sympathy for him.
And obviously, we hope his last few starts for the Mets are great, and he still gets that opportunity to win a World Series with the New York Mets.