The New York Mets have been keeping pace with the red-hot Atlanta Braves at the top of the National League East to start the season. However, Mets owner Steve Cohen is investing $144 million MORE in payroll than Atlanta in 2023. One would assume that in year three, the primary stakeholder has higher expectations this season than a wild-card-round loss at Citi Field.

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One of Cohen's biggest investments this season hasn't played a game, yet. 2022 Cy Young Award winner, Justin Verlander is getting ready for a rehab start and then his debut with the Mets.

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Getty Images

The 40-year old, suffered a teres-major muscle strain during spring training. According to Tim Healey of, Verlander faced hitters on Sunday for the first time since getting hurt, almost month ago. If Verlander recovers properly from that throwing session, the right-hander is scheduled to make a minor-league rehabilitation start on Friday, which could be with one of their upstate New York affiliates.

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Getty Images

The Mets Triple-A affiliate Syracuse is playing in Toledo on Friday. However, the Double-A Binghamton Rumble Ponies are home vs. Akron. Weather certainly will certainly be a factor on where the Mets decide to start Verlander. According to, the forecast for Binghamton on Friday is in the low 60's, which isn't terrible for late April.

If you want to gamble and buy some Binghamton Rumble Ponies tickets for Friday, as of Monday morning, you could sit four rows behind the 3rd base dugout for $15. Concessions are pretty reasonable. I can guarantee you that you won't have to pay $18 for a beer like you do at Citi Field. Click here to purchase tickets on the Rumble Ponies website.

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