MLB: Mets pitcher Noah Syndergaard owns Cleveland Indians on Twitter
Step one: throw six scoreless innings.
Step two: burn opponent on Twitter.
That’s the formula New York Mets starter Noah Syndergaard followed Thursday in the Mets’ 2-0, rain-shortened victory over the Cleveland Indians at Citi Field.
The right-hander retired the first 16 batters he faced before Tyler Naquin floated a single into center field for Cleveland’s first knock of the game. Syndergaard finished with five strikeouts and threw 73 pitches (50 strikes) before a rain delay forced his exit.
Earlier in the day, the Indians’ Twitter account offered a message to fans frustrated by the team slipping in the AL Central standings – the Twins led the division by three games entering Thursday’s contest – that called the Mets a “fringe postseason team.”
Syndergaard took exception to that premise and pitched like it, helping the Mets complete a three-game sweep. Then, Thor delivered a thunderous clapback on Twitter.
The Mets (67-60) currently trail the St. Louis Cardinals by 1.5 games for the second NL Wild Card spot. They own the best record in the majors since the All-Star break (26-10) and have outscored opponents 195-125 in that span.
That turnaround has coincided with Syndergaard’s own hot streak. Over his last eight starts, dating back to July 13, he’s posted a 1.82 ERA with a .207 opponents’ batting average and 55 strikeouts – plus one solid Twitter burn.
Another Mets starter, Marcus Stroman, piled on after Syndergaard’s tweet:
USA TODAY Sports’ Larry Berger talks to Mets third baseman J.D. Davis about the playoff atmosphere at Citi Field. USA TODAY