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Mets’ Noah Syndergaard returns to the hill after 2 years: Chronicle of Ace’s path after damage

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The Mets had one of the most polarizing seasons in MLB history that year – literally.

Never has a team done as well as the Mets for as long only to fizzle out as they did. From MLB.com’s Mets Beat writer Anthony DiComo:

I saw this statistic in several places today, and there is no better summary of the Mets 2021:

No team in Major League history has spent so much time (103 days) in first place and finished with a record loss. The Mets are mathematically guaranteed to be the first.

– Anthony DiComo (@AnthonyDiComo) September 27, 2021

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Though the Mets’ playoff chances have long since been dashed – there’s no chance they’ll end at .500 or better – there may have been a silver lining at the end of the season. Right-handed pitcher Noah Syndergaard returned to the hill on Tuesday to take on the Marlins, his first time on the Mets’ active list in nearly two years.

He hit only one inning but looked in top form, hitting two batter and throwing 10 pitches, including nine for strikes.

Here’s what you need to know about Syndergaard’s injury and his return to the hill:

What was Noah Syndergaard’s injury?

In May 2020, Syndergaard, nicknamed Thor, underwent surgery from Tommy John to repair a torn ulnar collateral ligament, his latest in a long line of injuries. It marginalized him for the entire 2020 season and much of the 2021 season, though he faced numerous setbacks along the way.

Syndergaard last appeared in the Major Leagues on September 29, 2019, when he completed seven innings and gave up three runs on five hits – while beating nine – in a 7-6 win over Atlanta. Oddly enough, it was also the Mets final that season. It was also the last time Syndergaard played a full season in the majors without spending time on the injured list.

As those setbacks began, doubts arose as to whether Syndergaard would ever serve for the Mets again, especially after significant delays in his rehab that summer. The 29-year-old right-hander has spent numerous stints on the injury list throughout his career, including a time on the 60-day injury list in 2017 after tearing a lateral muscle tear from where he was sidelined from May 1 to September 23.

In 2018, he landed twice on the injured list: the first time in over a month, from the end of May to July 12, with a torn ligament in his finger. The second time was July 22 of this year; he missed 10 days with an infectious hand, foot and mouth disease.

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How long has Noah Syndergaard been Met?

Syndergaard joined the Mets in 2012 as a key figure in a trade.

Syndergaard was a top pitching project in the Blue Jays’ farm system at the time and was sold to the Mets together with his co-project Wulimer Becerra and the catchers John Buck and Travis d’Arnaud. In return, the Blue Jays got the reigning NL Cy Young Award winner RA Dickey and the catchers Mike Nickeas and Josh Thole.

After spending a few years in the Mets farm system, he made his debut on May 12, 2015 at the age of 22. He threw 5.1 innings and gave up three runs on six hits while hitting six and taking the loss.

All in all, Syndergaard started 24 games for the Mets that year, setting a 9-7 record with a 3.25 ERA, beating 166 batter in 150 innings, good enough for fourth place in the NL Rookie of the election Year.

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What is Noah Syndergaard’s contract?

Unlike many of his contemporaries pitching who entered the league around the same time, Syndergaard never received a massive contract renewal from the Mets.

After his contract expired at the end of the 2020 season, he signed $ 9.7 million for a year to stay with the Mets until the end of the 2021 season.

Now that the end of the season has come, Syndergaard will be joining the freelance agency for the first time in his career at the age of 29, his first chance to earn big bucks and a long-term contract.

So far, Syndergaard is 47-30 with a 3.31 ERA and 777 strikeouts in 717 innings, with an All-Star nod under his belt.

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