The Texas Rangers made Jacob deGrom the pitcher he is now (when healthy)

Seth Carlson
Mar 22, 2022; Port St. Lucie, Florida, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Jacob deGrom (48) delivers a pitch in the first inning of the spring training game against the Houston Astros at Clover Park. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 22, 2022; Port St. Lucie, Florida, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Jacob deGrom (48) delivers a pitch in the first inning of the spring training game against the Houston Astros at Clover Park. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports /
facebooktwitterreddit

As the Texas Rangers get set to embark on a three-game series at Citi Field in New York against the Mets over July 4th weekend, it’s hard for me not to think about the profound impact the Rangers had on helping to mold Jacob deGrom into what he’s become today: the best pitcher in baseball, when healthy.

Let’s flashback to June 2017, when the Rangers hosted the Mets at the old Globe Life Park in Arlington. It was the fifth inning of a game Texas had bludgeoned deGrom in, scoring an unheard of eight runs off the stud pitcher and knocking him out of the game prematurely.

Since the worst start of his career against the Texas Rangers in 2017, Jacob deGrom has become the league’s best pitcher

Visibly shaken in the dugout, deGrom had to be consoled by then-Mets manager Terry Collins, who probably gave his ace some words of encouragement. Those words clearly spoke volumes, because to this day, Jacob deGrom has never had a start as bad as that fateful night in Arlington.

deGrom went on to have a solid year in 2017, finishing with a 3.53 ERA in 31 starts that season. And in 2018? He took his game to another level, winning the NL Cy Young with a 1.70 ERA. The rest is history.

But before the right-hander made league history and rose to best pitcher in the game status? He was taken to school by the Texas Rangers, a team in 2017 that had come off back-to-back AL West titles, though finished that season in disappointing fashion, as we all know. Now, though, the Texas Rangers wished they had an ace of their own like the one they made in New York, or the other one that made history as a Ranger who started out his career with the Mets (with all due respect to Martin Perez this season).

dark. Next. Kiner-Falefa takes unnecessary shot at Rangers

deGrom has been injured to this point, so he won’t get to extract any revenge on the Rangers in 2022, but given that Texas and the Mets haven’t faced off since that 2017 series in Arlington, it’s worth noting that the Rangers helped give way to the remarkable rise of a pitcher now accepted as the best when he’s healthy.

facebooktwitterreddit