Jacob deGrom Is Latest Former Met to Burn Out After Leaving New York

The Texas Rangers signed deGrom to a $185 million, five-year deal last winter

Jacob deGrom of the Texas Rangers returns to the dugout.
Jacob deGrom will have season-ending surgery to repair a torn UCL
Bailey Orr/Texas Rangers/Getty

In 2015 using a starting rotation that generally consisted of Matt Harvey, Jacob deGrom, Bartolo Colon, Jon Niese and Noah Syndergaard, the New York Mets managed to go 90-72 and make it all the way to the World Series before falling to the Kansas City Royals in five games. The following year, Steven Matz replaced Niese, but the other four members of the rotation remained intact as New York went 87-75 but failed to make it make to MLB’s championship series.

In 2017, Colon was gone, Matz and Syndergaard were injured during the year, and Harvey and deGrom were the only members of the rotation that pitched the Mets to the World Series in ’15 to take the mound more than 15 times as a starter that season. The next year, Harvey was dealt to the Reds after making four starts for the Mets. Harvey, who went 13-8 with a 2.71 ERA across 29 starts in 2015 after missing the entire 2014 season due to Tommy John surgery, bounced around to five teams in four seasons after leaving the Mets and never had an ERA under 4.50 again. Bad as he was, things got worse for Harvey when his involvement with the 2019 accidental overdose of Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs was revealed. Suspended for 60 games in 2022 for violating Major League Baseball’s Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment program, Harvey retired this year.

Bartolo Colon, 46, Wants to Return to MLB for One More Season
Colon hasn’t thrown a pitch in the majors since September of 2018

The second member of the Mets’ young trifecta of star pitchers from ’15 to leave town was Syndergaard, who left in 2022 and signed a one-year deal with the Angels worth $21 million. It did not go well for Syndergaard in LA, as he went 5-8 with a 3.83 ERA in 15 starts before being dealt to the Phillies. Syndergaard actually pitched reasonably well for the Phillies but was not retained by Philadelphia and signed with the Dodgers prior to this season.

In his first season with the Dodgers, Syndergaard has struggled to the tune of a 1-4 record with a 6.54 ERA and 1.39 WHIP through 11 starts. He’s allowed at least five earned runs in four of those outings and is on the verge of falling out of the rotation in LA.

The third member of NY’s former star rotation, deGrom, is guaranteed to be out of the rotation in Texas after signing a  $185 million, five-year deal with the Rangers last winter. Like Harvey and Syndergaard before him, deGrom was unable to find the success he had in NYC outside of the Big Apple and made just six starts for the Rangers before leaving with an injury in late April. While it was unclear what the treatment plan would be, the Rangers announced on Tuesday that deGrom will have season-ending surgery next week to repair a torn ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow.

“We’ve got a special group here, and to not be able to be out there and help them win, that stinks,” deGrom said. “Wanting to be out there and helping the team, it’s a disappointment.”

But, based on what has previously happened to the stars of NY’s World Series rotation, it’s not a surprise.

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