Wow, just wow, that’s all I can say about the performance that I watched Noah Syndergaard deliver yesterday. He threw a complete game shutout, struck out 10, and also hit a solo home run in a Mets 1-0 victory; talk about carrying your team to a win. He became the first pitcher in Mets history to hit a home run and throw a shutout in a 1-0 win, and was the first player from any franchise to do it since 1983 (Bob Welch). He is also now the third Mets pitcher this year to throw seven or more shutout innings, strikeout 10 or more, AND hit a home run, joining Jacob deGrom (April 3) and Zack Wheeler (April 23); I don’t have the information in front of me, but I would have to imagine that hasn’t happened in one season too often, if ever (by one team). Oh yeah, and it’s only the start of May! Thor gave up just four hits (all singles) and needed just 104 pitches to cruise through the Reds. The home run (can be seen below) was his second of the year and sixth of his career, meaning he is now just one home run shy of the Mets home run record by a pitcher (Dwight “Doc” Gooden). It was truly a historic day for Syndergaard.

Strong Outings

No one could compete with Thor’s historic day, but there were a few other outings deserving of mention:

  • Stephen Strasburg tossed 6.2 innings of one-run ball in a win against the Cardinals. He gave up six hits and struck out nine. He hit 1500 career strikeouts in this game and became the fastest (innings wise – 1272.1) to do it in the history of MLB.
  • Charlie Morton , like Strasburg, hurled 6.2 innings of one-run ball, but Morton was stuck with a no-decision. He gave up five hits and struck out nine. Morton has now given up two or fewer runs in six out of seven starts to begin the year, while piling up 48 strikeouts across 39.1 innings pitched.
  • José Berríos pitched seven innings of two-run ball in a win over the Astros. He gave up seven hits while striking out five. He needed just 88 pitches to get through the seven frames and it’s somewhat surprising the Twins didn’t let their ace pitch the eighth. He is now 5-1 with a 2.91 ERA.
  • Danny Duffy delivered a solid outing for the Royals, pitching six innings and allowing just one run. He gave up six hits and struck out six, but was stuck with a no-decision. Duffy has a 3.27 ERA through his first two starts, but only seven strikeouts across 11.0 innings of work.
  • Dakota Hudson turned in his best outing of the season, tossing six innings and allowing two runs (one earned). It was his first career quality start. He allowed four hits and struck out seven, but was hit with a loss as he was outdueled by Strasburg.

Hitter Highlights

It was a pretty uneventful day yesterday as far as hitters go, we had no double-dong games, no bash-and-dash games, and no one put together a four-hit effort. However, we still had a few solid performances to look at:

Ian Kinsler finished 3-6 with a home run, two doubles, two RBI, and three runs scored. He was the top scoring hitter on both DraftKings and FanDuel. It’s been a slow start for Kinsler, who is hitting just .174 still despite the three-hit day.

David Dahl went 3-5 with a home run, a double, three RBI, and two runs scored. When this guy is healthy he is a baller, unfortunately that hasn’t been all that often. He now has nine doubles and three home runs to go along with his .333 batting average through 87 at bats.

Raimel Tapia , like fellow teammate Dahl, also finished 3-5 and slugged a home run. His other two hits were both singles and he had two RBI and one run scored. Tapia is getting consistent playing time right now and taking advantage of it, as he now has four home runs and a .286 average.

Whit Merrifield had a pair of triples and also drove in a run in the Royals 3-1 win. He now has five triples on the year to go along with four home runs, six steals, and a .298 batting average. Merrifield has been one of the leagues more consistent producers over the past couple of seasons.

Brian Goodwin finished 3-4 with a stolen base and a run scored. The steal was his first of the year. Goodwin has been hitting third for the Angels over the last four games, but he hasn’t let that pressure get to him, as he is 6-16 with a home run and three runs scored since being moved there. He is currently hitting a robust .341 on the year.

Milestone Tracker

In my most recent Round Up piece (April 1) I wrote about CC Sabathia reaching 3000 career strikeouts and how he needs just three more wins for 250. Strasburg reached a milestone yesterday too, so in today’s piece I decided to take a look at some upcoming milestones for a few other guys that we can be on the lookout for in the upcoming days/weeks.

  • Albert Pujols needs just two more RBI to reach 2000 for his career. He will be just the fifth player in MLB history to reach the mark, and two of the other four are unofficial (Babe Ruth and Cap Anson – Hank Aaron and Alex Rodriguez the other two). Pujols has hit many milestones throughout his career and this impressive feat is another for the surefire Hall of Famer. He is unquestionably one of the greatest players to ever play the game.
  • Robinson Canó is just one hit shy of 2500 for his career. Something to watch for when he takes the field tonight in Milwaukee. He will be the 101st player in MLB history to reach this milestone. His steroid suspension will always make his career murky, but there’s no doubting that he was one of the best pure hitters of this generation.
  • Joey Gallo ’s next home run will be the 100th of his career. Still just 25-years old, the big swinging slugger is one of the best in the business at the long ball. We are going to be watching this guy launch baseballs over the fence for a long time.
  • Anthony Rizzo two dingers shy of 200 for his career. He has had at least 25 home runs in five straight seasons, but has never topped 32. Rizzo isn’t thought of as a big time power-hitter, but he has a pretty solid chance at topping 350 home runs in his career, barring injuries.
  • Whit Merrifield is 12 knocks away from 500 career hits and he is also seven steals shy of 100 for his career. Merrifield got a late start to his career, not making his MLB debut until age 27, but he has been fantastic ever since (makes you wonder how on earth it took so long). With the late start, it will be tough for him to reach any big milestones, but he’s still a great player. 

What to Watch for Today

The Reds top prospect, Nick Senzel , will make his MLB debut tonight in Cincinnati against the Giants. He has been a top-10 ranked prospect each of the last years and needs to be added in your league if he is still available. He has hit over .300 in all three of his full minor league seasons (2016-2018).

Tyler Glasnow will bring his 5-0 record and 1.75 ERA into his start against the Orioles today. He has pitched five or more innings and given up two or fewer runs in all six of his starts this season. The Orioles are bottom ten in runs scored, so it will be a good opportunity for Glasnow to keep the good times rolling.

Clayton Kershaw and the Dodgers will cap off today’s slate at 10:10pm ET. Kershaw has been fantastic through three starts, picking up a quality start in all three and striking out 21 across 20 innings of work. He will take on the Padres.