New York Mets: Thor Brings First Win Down From Heavens, Shuts Down Royals (Highlights)

Led by starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard, the New York Mets slammed the door shut on the Kansas City Royals, beating them 2-0.

  • New York Mets 2 (1-1)
  • Kansas City Royal 0 (1-1)
  • MLB, Final, Box Score
  • Kaufman Stadium, Kansas City, MO

Speaking about baseball and how its evolved, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred declared, “It’s a really safe game,” during an interview with the SNY Booth at Tuesday’s Mets-Royals game.

Well, I’ve got news for you, commish: There’s nothing safe about Noah Syndergaard taking the mound every fifth game this season.

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It appears no Royals player was willing to accept the tempting World Series challenge of meeting the 6-6, 240 lbs. flamethrower precisely 60 feet and 6 inches away.

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The phenom’s powerful arm was ready from the start, pumping out 99+ mph fastballs by the dozen in six shutout innings.

Doubtful, but, maybe Thor was a little nervous at the start, because he allowed a triple to Alcides Escobar to lead off the game.

The second Escobar put his hand on third base, Syndergaard was locked in, to the tune of three huge inning-ending strikeouts of Kansas City’s 2-3-4 hitters.

Then in the fifth inning, it happened again.

Thor was stuck in quite the conundrum after Yoenis Cespedes grossly misjudged a ball hit to straightaway centerfield, allowing a leadoff double, and ending a streak of 12 straight Royals retired by Syndergaard.

So, it was time for the pitcher to go to work. He struck out the next two batters and coaxed a groundout to get the third, and leave the “Kings of Contact” scoreless.

In the sixth, you guessed it, Thor got out of another jam, this time with the bases loaded.

His final line: 6.0 IP, 3 hits, 1 BB, 9 Ks.

Breaking Bad: 

Syndergaard’s performance today shows just how fast the 23-year-old kid is learning.

At this point in time, he has an impressive of command of four mind-boggling pitches.

He struck out five in the first three innings, and none came via his signature punch-out pitch, the fastball. Three with a slider, two with a changeup.

Speaking of sliders, Syndergaard’s got one now, and the National League better watch out. By the end of the sixth inning, six of his nine total strikeouts came from the “Warthen Slider,” a pitch Thor couldn’t throw when he was called up to the Bigs less than one year ago.

Per ESPN’s Jayson Starks, Syndergaard struck out just 11 batters with his new favorite pitch over the course of last season.

MVP: 

The Most Valuable Player in today’s game was second baseman Neil Walker.

In the fourth inning, the Met scorched a belt high fastball to right, sneaking the ball inside the foul pole for a 2-run home run.

His finished 2-4 with the one bomb and two ribeyes.

So yeah, our new second baseman hits homers too. Take that, Daniel Murphy.

Hot Wheels:

Here’s some reassuring David Wright news: The Captain had his first hit of the season.

Here’s better Wright news: He stole two bases Tuesday, with Gold Glover Salvador Perez lurking behind the plate, nonetheless.

Sure, he got a great jump both times. And, sure, he swiped second with the sloth that is pitcher Chris Young on the mound.

But, as a matter of fact, the Captain is the first player in the MLB in this very young season to have two steals.

Who woulda thunk it? Not me and not you. That’s for sure.

A New Face: 

Mets newcomer Jim Henderson looked dominant in one inning of relief work, while trying to protect a 2-run lead.

The 33-year-old’s fastball topped out at 97 mph on the radar gun, a major key to his making the roster, and taking out the Royals in order in the seventh.

A Welcome Face:

Next up in relief was Addison Reed. The reliever, who came over in a 2015 mid-season trade, made his first appearance after re-upping with the Mets this offseason.

He followed up Henderson’s play with a 1-2-3 inning of his own.

A Familia Face:

Jeurys Familia came on in the ninth to close his first game of the young baseball season, and he did the job…well.

With Lorenzo Cain, Eric Hosmer, and Kendrys Morales – the heart of KC’s batting order -due up, Familia brought his A-game.

After striking out Cain with a nasty 97 mph sinker, the closer coaxed two groundouts, handing the Mets their first win of the season.

What’s Next: 

The Mets are heading back to New York City for their home-opener, Friday, against the Philadelphia Phillies. The series opens up a six-game home stand for the team. First pitch is scheduled for 1:10 pm ET.

NEXT: Neil Walker Smashes First Home Run With New York Mets (Video)


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Jeremy Fialkow was born and raised in Miami, FLA, but currently studies at the University of Maryland. When he's not studying hard, he can be found supporting his sometimes hopeless NY teams: Knicks, Mets, Jets, and Isles. Your sympathy is appreciated.