By Eddie Castro
Today is a great day in the world of sport! The wait is over, and for New York baseball fans, today is the start of grueling, hard-fought, exciting days ahead as the 2019 baseball season officially kicks off. For our respective local teams, both the Yankees and Mets made a few moves that should better them going into the 2019 campaign. Here is the tale of their tapes.
For the New York Mets, they will try to improve from what was a year full of a lot of injuries and losses that came in the process, which all piled up to a 4th-place finish in the National League East after posting a win-loss record of 77-85. The franchise shake-up started with the team shopping for a new General Manager in Brodie Van Wagenen. The new Mets GM was quite active in his new role and made sure he left his imprint this off-season. The team acquired former Yankee slugger Robinson Cano as well as one of the most exciting studs in closer Edwin Diaz via trade. It also re-signed a former Met in Jeurys Familia to complement Diaz in what should be a much-improved bullpen. The team also went on to add a former All-Star catcher in Wilson Ramos and have a few young players who could very well make a significant impact on the team.
With all the signings the team did this off-season, the most impactful came this past Tuesday when the team decided to re-sign arguably the best pitcher in baseball, Jacob deGrom, to a 5-year/$137.5 million deal. Although the Mets are in one of the most competitive divisions in the National League, the Mets (on paper) they could very well compete for the division title, something they haven’t done since 2015.
As for the Bronx Bombers, the Yankees did a little winter shopping of their own. The team knows that going into free agency it would have to address its pitching to compete with the reigning World Champions and their division rival, the Boston Red Sox. The Yankees struck a trade with the Seattle Mariners, as well, by acquiring one of the best left-handed pitchers in James Paxton. The team also re-signed another lefty in J.A. Happ, who went 7-0 for the team when acquired from the Toronto Blue Jays. Veteran C.C. Sabathia re-signed with the club in what will be his farewell season. GM Brian Cashman also strengthened his bullpen by re-signing Zack Britton and acquiring Adam Ottavino from the Colorado Rockies after losing David Robertson to the Phillies. The team added a veteran bat in Troy Tulowitzki and former All-Star second baseman D.J. LaMahieu.
The Yankees have great depth within their roster and will need it the most for the first month of the season as they deal with injuries to Sabathia, Luis Severino, Dellin Betances, Didi Gregorious (out until late July) and Aaron Hicks. The Yankees will look to make a strong push to dethrone the Red Sox and hopefully add a 28th championship to our city.