Speaking with Mike Puma of the New York Post, Mets pitching coach Dave Eiland had a lot to say about the Mets rotation, most of which wasn’t particularly surprising. What was surprising, however, was what he had to say about one of the Mets two aces.
“I just don’t know where the expectations came from,” Eiland said about Noah Syndergaard. “He’s spent, what, two and a half years in the big leagues? So I don’t know where all the expectations came from, I wasn’t here for all that, but he is yet to do a whole lot at the Major League level. Now is he capable of it? Yeah, but he is 25 years old. For the most part every game he’s kept us in it and given us a chance to win.”
Syndergaard has gone 2-1 with a 3.09 ERA, 2.78 FIP, and 1.200 WHIP in 46.2 innings this season. He has struck out 54 and walked just 10. After a mediocre start against the Rockies, Syndergaard made light of his early season “struggles”.
“I keep on getting those mediocre starts out of the way so I can dominate in September, I guess,” Thor said.
The reality is that Syndergaard’s numbers have been very good this season — Just not at the level we expect from the guy with a 100 mph fastball, 95 mph slider and devastating change-up. Eiland’s comments about his career, however, are hard to understand.
At the age of 23, in 2016, he made his first All Star team when he went 14-9 with a 2.60 ERA to go with an MLB-best 2.29 FIP and 0.5 HR/9. He struck out 218 batters in just 183.2 innings that season, walking only 43 good for a 5.07 K/BB rate. He has a career 2.91 ERA and 2.62 FIP, and has pitched 26.0 innings in the postseason with a 2.42 ERA and 36 strikeouts.
I honestly don’t understand where Eiland is coming from with these comments. Noah Syndergaard has more than proven himself over the course of his short career, and his stuff is so obviously good it would be silly not to expect impressive numbers.
I will say that us fans seem to expect him to throw a no-hitter every time he takes the mound, so anything less is disappointing. Despite that, it is important to be reasonable and acknowledge fact is that a 3.09 ERA and an average of 5.83 innings-pitched per game this season are very good numbers, not to mention his very impressive career numbers, something Eiland doesn’t seem to have acknowledged when he says he’s “yet to do much at the Major League level.”