Noah Syndergaard led the New York Mets to their second consecutive 1-0 win over the Miami Marlins to close out the 2018 season on an extremely high note.
Syndergaard, 26, threw a complete game shutout, striking out six and walking none. He lowered his ERA for the year down to a more-than-respectable 3.03 and showed, to this writer at least, that Thor is officially back.
He retired eight straight Miami hitters from the second through fourth innings, striking out Chad Wallach, Sandy Alcantara, and Yadiel Rivera along the way, before allowing a two-out single to Dietrich. He got newly-minted villain Peter O’Brien to fly out to center to end the frame.
Wallach singled with two outs in the fifth, but Syndergaard made quick work of his counterpart Alcantara to leave him stranded.
After another perfect inning in the sixth, and another strikeout (Rivera again), Thor allowed another two-out hit, a single to Lewis Brinson in the seventh, but left him on base as well, retiring Issac Galloway on a groundout.
Syndergaard squeezed a Magneuris Sierra double between two more punchouts in the eighth, the second coming on a deadly slider that had Riddle riddled.
Thor set down Christopher Bostick, Dietrich, and O’Brien to finish off his gem and close out his second complete game of the year.
Noah Syndergaard’s final line for the season stands as such: 13-4 with a 3.03 ERA, 155 strikeouts, 39 walks, and a 1.21 WHIP.
While this falls just shy of the level of performance we’ve come to expect over the last few seasons, the 26-year-old lost nearly an entire season in 2017 (torn lateral muscle) and battled through multiple, freak, injuries this season (strained finger ligament; hand, foot, and mouth disease).
If this is Syndergaard just finally hitting his stride, how can we not be excited about his 2019 season and the progress that’s sure to come with it?