Quantcast

Mets roster projection for Opening Day 2023

Note: if you purchase something through one of our affiliate links, Schneps Media may earn a commission.
Pete Alonso Jeff McNeil Mets
(AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

A team on paper built over the winter rarely stays exactly the same by the time Opening Day rolls around — and the Mets know all about that. 

The injury bug, as always, has swept its way through New York’s ranks. With two weeks before the start of the regular season, the Mets have some hurdles to address within their impending 26-man roster.

Here is how we think Buck Showalter’s roster will shape up come Opening Day in Miami on March 30:

2023 Mets Opening Day roster projection

Catchers (2)

Tomas Nido Mets
Tomas NIdo (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
  • Tomas Nido
  • Omar Narvaez

The backstop situation appears to be going to plan for the Mets. There’s a reason they brought in Omar Narvaez this offseason to platoon alongside Tomas Nido: Francisco Alvarez isn’t quite ready for the show, yet. The Mets’ No. 1 prospect has struggled this spring and with concerns about the readiness of his defense, it’s becoming an easier decision to have him start the year in Triple-A.

Infielders

Eduardo Escobar Mets Marlins
New York Mets’ Eduardo Escobar (10) celebrates after hitting a walk-off RBI single during the 10th inning of a baseball game against the Miami Marlins Wednesday, Sept. 28, 2022, in New York. The Mets won 5-4. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)
  • 1B- Pete Alonso
  • 2B- Jeff McNeil
  • 3B- Eduardo Escobar
  • SS- Francisco Lindor

The only uncertainty regarding the infield this spring is which player would man third base. Eduardo Escobar is the well-respected veteran coming off a searing-hot finish to the 2022 season (.340 BA, 1.042 OPS, eight home runs, 24 RBI in September). More importantly, though, he’s due $9 million this season — which is the most likely reason why he’ll be starting the season as the man at the hot corner. Baty, the Mets’ No. 2 prospect, isn’t far behind, though. He’s had a monster spring and should be the team’s first call-up should they need it.

Outfielders

Starling Marte Mets Wild Card Series roster
Starling Marte (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)
  • LF- Mark Canha
  • CF- Brandon Nimmo
  • RF- Starling Marte

Nimmo is back for the long haul after signing an eight-year deal to stay with the Mets while Canha enters the final year of his contract after a successful first campaign in Queens last year. This will be a “show-me” season for Canha with free agency looming and the Mets already believed to be preparing for the pursuit of big-name free agents. As for Marte, he avoided an injury scare earlier this week after getting hit in the head by a pitch just three days after making his spring-training debut coming off groin surgery.

Designated Hitter

Daniel Vogelbach powers the Mets to a win
New York Mets’ Daniel Vogelbach watches his home run during the third inning of the team’s baseball game against the Atlanta Braves on Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022, in New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)
  • Daniel Vogelbach
  • Darin Ruf

This is going to be the most scrutinized position of the batting order this season considering how the Mets did not make any upgrades. Vogelbach had an .830 OPS with the Mets after coming over from the Pittsburgh Pirates midseason, but he lacked the power needed by a bat that was often following Pete Alonso in the No. 5 spot. Darin Ruf struggled mightily, slashing .152/.216/.197 (.413 OPS) in 66 at-bats across 28 games after he was brought in from the San Francisco Giants. He blamed the cross-country transition mid-year for his struggles, which the Mets seem to believe, too. He’s been highly successful against left-handed pitching throughout his career and that’s getting him another shot in New York. However, the leash shouldn’t be all that long for him and the Mets could call on the likes of Mark Vientos or even Baty if they need more at DH.

Bench

Luis Guillorme injury Mets
Luis Guillorme (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)
  • IF- Luis Guillorme
  • OF- Tommy Pham

Guillorme provides exceptional defensive depth at second, third, and shortstop along with a productive .278 batting average and .711 OPS over the last three seasons. In the outfield, Pham provides a legitimate backup option in the corners, allowing Jeff McNeil to fully focus on playing second base. He’s also averaged 17 home runs since 2017, which could warrant some DH at-bats, too.

Starting Pitchers

Max Scherzer Mets
Max Scherzer (AP Photo/Scot Tucker)
  • RHP- Justin Verlander
  • RHP- Max Scherzer
  • RHP- Kodai Senga
  • RHP- Carlos Carrasco
  • LHP- David Peterson

Verlander says he isn’t here to replace Jacob deGrom, but that’s why the Mets brought him in as a co-ace alongside Max Scherzer. Behind them is Senga, brought in from Japan, to be the No. 3 man as he continues to adjust to a bigger ball and steeper mound in the majors. A question has arisen at the bottom of the rotation after Jose Quintana was shut down until at least July because of a benign lesion found on his rib. While it’s down to Tylor Megill and David Peterson — both of whom are having strong springs — I’m going with the latter to provide the rotation with at least one southpaw.

Relief Pitchers

Edwin Diaz Mets
Edwin Diaz (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)
  • RHP- John Curtiss
  • RHP- Edwin Diaz
  • RHP- Tommy Hunter
  • RHP- Stephen Nogosek
  • RHP- Adam Ottavino
  • LHP- Brooks Raley
  • RHP- David Robertson
  • RHP- Drew Smith

Curtiss gets in over Sam Coonrod thanks to a high-grade lat strain that will sideline the reliever. It would’ve been a difficult decision to make, though, between Curtiss, Coonrod, and Tommy Hunter — was too good last season to get sent down to the minors. Raley is dealing with a hamstring injury picked up with Team USA at the World Baseball Classic, but he believes he’ll be OK to go for Opening Day.

For more on the Mets, visit AMNY.com