Noah Syndergaard‘s final stat line: 5.2ip, 7H, 1ER, 3BBs, 8Ks. He threw 95 pitches (61 strikes). Of course, the hits Syndergaard gave up are a little deceptive considering 3 of those 7 hits were singles by Nick Franklin, the oft-mentioned SS for Tacoma. With that being said, scattering 4 hits among the remaining 8 hitters is a positive for Syndergaard. Syndergaard’s 3 walks were problematic however, as he surrendered 2 of them directly before or after a base hit.
Some things to really look at are how devastating Syndergaard can be when he uses his height to pound the bottom of the strike zone. The amount those fastballs drop make it nearly impossible for opposing hitters to hit. He struck out the side in the 3rd inning despite surrendering a run off the bat of Franklin.
Oh, and just to go along with that downward pitching plane is the fact that Syndergaard was able to pump the velocity up to 100mph. Imagine that pitch “getting on you” as BJ Upton said during spring training–and that was just during a short audition when Syndergaard knew he’d start the season in the minors regardless of his ST performance. Syndergaard began to show this later in the game, seeming to once again become stronger, more aggressive, and pound the strike zone. Syndergaard began his 6th inning of work with back-to-back strikeouts before giving up a single that would end his night. To go along with that fastball is Syndergaard’s continued development of his change-up and curveball (or better referred to as the “hook from Hell”). Syndergaard’s improvement will explode as soon as he can start mixing all of his pitches. Batters will be in for a nightmare.
Hypothetically removing Nick Franklin from Syndergaard’s start really shows how dominant Thor was. That’s not how things work, so instead Syndergaard’s pitch count ballooned enough to halt his performance. He got things done, but needs to learn to hold runners on base better. It’s honestly the only reason he gave up a run at all in the 3rd inning. It’s encouraging to see how he can power through even as the game goes on, which is in stark contrast to Zack Wheeler‘s velocity diminishing as a game progresses.