Some teams would hesitate before awarding a two-year, $86.7 million contract to 40-year-old Justin Verlander in February.
However, the Mets did not hesitate, and Verlander insisted he has enough of gas left.
It is the reason he has returned after undergoing core surgery in 2014 and Tommy John surgery a year ago.
“Why invest so much time, effort, labor, and sacrifice, only to sell myself short in the end?” Verlander stated on Tuesday during his introductory press conference at Citi Field. “It’s the equivalent of running a marathon and stopping a mile from the finish. Perhaps I’m ten miles away from the finish line. I’m not sure. How would you respond? This is my mentality. I feel amazing. My body feels wonderful. I believe the game will tell me when it’s time to move away, and I’m not even close to that stage yet.”
And now he will join Max Scherzer at the top of a rotation for a team with high hopes and a salary that has risen past $
When asked about the pressure to deliver in October with such high expectations, Verlander stated, “Whenever a good, quality team is together, there is pressure to win.” Would you prefer it to be the other way around? I do not believe so.”
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Owner Steve Cohen and general manager Billy Eppler are in complete agreement.
As soon as they saw Jacob deGrom leave for Texas without hesitation, their focus shifted to Verlander, who won the American League Cy Young Award and the World Series with the Astros in his first season after Tommy John surgery.
Now, the Mets are counting on Verlander and Scherzer to carry them to the World Series.
The two were colleagues with the Tigers earlier in their careers, and Verlander reported that they were training together in Jupiter, Florida, during the offseason.
He anticipates both of them to be leaders in Queens this season.
“That’s something we’ve probably both learned,” Verlander said of his relationship with Scherzer. “I know that good rivalry is fantastic.” “How you handle this is crucial, since a lack of communication can lead to an unhealthy competitiveness. “That’s not going to occur.”