There are so many different layers to the Noah Syndergaard ejection on Saturday night after he threw behind Chase Utley in the third inning.
First, if you are trying to hit someone, then hit someone. You have pin-point control. Don’t tell me the pitch got away or it was a warm night out at CitiField, the facts are you sent a purpose pitch toward Utley and got run out of the game. Let’s not forget, Syndergaard did pitch in Las Vegas before getting called up to the majors. I don't want hear about sweat and perspiration, but all this is being said because he wants to avoid some sort of suspension by Major League Baseball.
Second, in today’s day and age of baseball and especially after the brawl that we all witnessed in Arlington between the Rangers and Blue Jays, you can’t be surprised that Syndergaard was thrown out of the game.
Add to the fact, that AL MVP Josh Donaldson of the Blue Jays told SportsNet a week ago that MLB needs to do something about protecting players from beanballs. Donaldson was nearly hit by two consecutive pitches by Twins starter Phil Hughes last Sunday. Donaldson added, “they say they’re trying to protect players. They make a rule that says you can’t slide hard into second base. They make a rule to protect the catchers on slides into home. But when you throw a ball at somebody, nothing’s done about it.”
It is the modern game, they do not let players police the game like they used to. Plus, it is not like retribution on Utley was not a major talking point when the Mets visited Los Angeles earlier this season and was certainly a talking point when this holiday weekend series got going on Friday night.
Why the need to gain some sort of retribution for a late slide in an October playoff series that you won? Well of course, that is old school baseball. But, let’s not forget the Mets won the divisional series, and that my friends is the most important thing.
You can understand the Rangers getting retribution on Bautista because he flipped the bat and showed them up in a series that they lost. The Mets won the series and are still looking for payback for a player they cut in spring training because they did not want to pay him. Ironically, on the same day that this saga played out with the Dodgers, the Cardinals were optioning Tejada to the minor leagues.
So, as Syndergaard was walking back to the dugout and the Mets were bringing in Logan Verrett to take over, was it worth it? As Chase Utley hit a solo homer and then followed up with a grand slam, was it worth it? On a night when the Mets honored their ’86 team that won a World Series, they lost 9-1, was it worth it? As the only good thing that came out of CitiField on Saturday night was the ’86 team celebration, was it worth it?
I ask was it worth it because the facts are Syndergaard did not even accomplish his goal of hitting Utley, he threw behind him. So you can’t be surprised or stunned that Syndergaard was not warned and was thrown out because of the history between the Utley and the Mets and what transpired down in Arlington a few weeks back.
The Mets wanted payback and they accomplished nothing Saturday night as they got embarrassed on the field and looked foolish answering questions after it. There was no other way to handle the questions after because they want to avoid any kind of suspension from MLB.
However, they should have taken care of Utley in Los Angeles and if you did not do it there, then you should have bagged it all together. Manager Terry Collins warned his team not to do anything in Los Angeles and the same sort of warning should have been delivered this weekend.
It wasn’t and it cost the Mets a game. Hopefully it does not cost Syndergaard more games. They gained nothing from the experience Saturday night other than a loss. They won in October and they lost in May.
Was it worth it?