One day after finding out that Jon Niese wouldn’t need shoulder surgery, the New York Mets received more good news when they learned that Shaun Marcum will have surgery to address numbness in his pitching hand and will miss the rest of the season. Normally, losing a starting pitcher for the season wouldn’t be considered good news, but without Marcum, the Mets should be a better team.
On the season, Marcum has just one win and 10 losses, with an ERA over five. He has been the weak spot in the starting rotation all season, and starts where he’s actually given the Mets a chance to win the game have been few and far between.
He was likely on the verge of losing his spot in the rotation due to his poor performance, and so this injury has allowed the Mets to rid of Marcum, as the end result is similar to the Mets simply releasing him.
In Marcum’s defense, he had been dealing with a variety of injuries all season long. He had an abbreviated spring training and missed the early part of the regular season while trying to get healthy.
He was clearly less than 100 percent during his most recent starts, but that should not absolve him from his poor performance, as he should have gone to the disabled list sooner if he knew he wasn’t healthy and his performance was being affected.
Marcum’s failure, in many ways, is a failure for general manager Sandy Alderson. The Mets signed just two free agents to major league contracts this past offseason, Marcum and Brandon Lyon, and neither was able to make it to the All-Star break on the active roster. They may have seemed like good signings at the time, but now both should be considered failures on the part of Alderson.
Marcum was signed with the hope that he would be able to eat up innings for the Mets and win at least 10 games. However, he ended up making just 14 appearances and lost 10 games, giving the Mets very little positive contributions, especially considering his $4 million salary, which is essentially wasted.
Wasted money aside, the Mets should be better off without Marcum. If the Mets need a fifth starter before Niese returns from his injury, they can insert Carlos Torres, who has been phenomenal since being promoted. So while losing Marcum may seem like bad news, losing him for the rest of the season should benefit the Mets’ starting rotation.