Aug 24, 2015; Philadelphia, PA, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Jacob deGrom (48) pitches against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. The Mets won 16-7. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
The 27-year old Jacob deGrom is the oldest of the pitchers that make up the youth movement in New York’s rotation, but he’s only in his second season. He won’t be arbitration eligible until 2018 and remains under team control until 2021.
deGrom has made an immediate impact for the Mets, capturing the Rookie of the Year award last season and earning a spot on the National League All-Star team this year. He is currently tied for third in the league with a 2.29 ERA, his 0.94 WHIP is 4th, he’s 9th among starters with a 9.23 K/9 and 5th with a 4.3 WAR. In only his second season in the big leagues, deGrom is already making a case for being among the top handful of pitchers in the NL.
FanGraphs’ Pitchf/x values deGrom as having five pitches that are above-average to excellent. His fastball, which he has thrown 62.7% of the time this season at an average velocity that is a tick under 95 MPH, is rated as the best in the majors at 20.0 runs above average (wFA). He also has an above-average two-seam fastball rated at 3.0 wFT. He compliments his heater with a hard slider that ranks 19th in the majors with 4.0 wSL, a quality changeup that ranks 16th at 3.9 wCH and a developing curveball that he mixes in about 9.5% of the time that remains above average.
Spare me the argument that deGrom wouldn’t be considered an ace if he moved from a pitcher-friendly park in the weaker NL to Fenway Park in the big, bad AL East. Guys that have his arsenal of quality pitches can pitch anywhere. Even if his ERA went up a bit from facing stronger lineups, he would still be among the best pitchers in the league.
Next: Matt Harvey