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Noah Syndergaard

NY Mets News: 3 ways to use Noah Syndergaard out of the bullpen

Feb 24, 2021; Port St. Lucie, Florida, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard (34) throws in the bull pen during spring training workouts at Clover Park. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports
Feb 24, 2021; Port St. Lucie, Florida, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard (34) throws in the bull pen during spring training workouts at Clover Park. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports
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Jul 30, 2021; New York City, New York, USA; New York Mets injured starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard (34) works out in the outfield before a game against the Cincinnati Reds at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

When Noah Syndergaard returns from the IL—if he returns from the IL—the New York Mets are expected to use him in a relief role. The reason for this: it’s a lot easier to go from Tommy John Surgery to pitching fewer innings than it is to jump right into working as a starting pitcher.

This is actually what Rising Apple’s Justin Sarchik had planned for him earlier this year when it looked like a tight fit to even get Thor into the rotation.

Somewhere, there’s a man in his 60s laughing at this because starting pitchers these days practically work the same way old relievers did. That’s neither here nor there.

It seems inevitable that Syndergaard will be used by the Mets in a lesser role once ready. The question I have is exactly how they plan to use him.

Will the Mets use Noah Syndergaard as a conventional reliever?

A conventional reliever works like this: every two or three days he steps out of the bullpen, onto the mound, and is asked to get around three outs, sometimes a few more.

I’m not sure this is actually the best way to use him because of the volume of days he’d be working.

I understand starting pitchers work more than we see them. They don’t just go into some cryogenic chamber whenever they’re not starting. They aren’t like my friend’s dad who, when we were both in kindergarten, already looked like he was 60. Two decades later, the man has aged maybe a year. Our running joke was also that his dad would be frozen during the times I didn’t see him which is why he was able to maintain his already elderly-youth.

Freezing starting pitchers is probably something we’ll talk about on Rising Apple around the year 2121. Science will suggest it’s best to have at least one cyborg in the rotation in case things go awry.

In 2021, asking Syndergaard to work as a conventional reliever may not be for the best. Fortunately, there are some other options.

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