The Cleveland Guardians announced on Sunday that they had designated Noah Syndergaard for assignment.
The news came shortly after he started against the Toronto Blue Jays, giving up five runs on four hits in six innings in what turned into a 10-7 Cleveland win in 11 innings.
Syndergaard surrendered three home runs to Toronto, which included a two-run blast by Vladimir Guerrero Jr. in the bottom of the first.
Syndergaard has been inconsistent since he arrived in Cleveland via a trade from the Los Angeles Dodgers in late July; in five starts prior to Sunday, Syndergaard posted a 4.94 ERA while giving up 16 runs on 29 hits and striking out 29 batters.
During his brief time with Cleveland, his best start came earlier this month when he gave up one run and struck out five in a 4-3 win over the Blue Jays on Aug. 10.
The start had been his first win since April 30.
Home runs have been the Achilles’ heel for Syndergaard this season, having given up 22 over 88 ½ innings.
And that was clear on Sunday.
“He just had trouble keeping it in the ballpark,” Guardians manager Terry Francona told Cleveland.com on Sunday. “He only gave up a few hits for a while, but the home runs kind of get in the way a little bit. I know it frustrated him.”
Cleveland is expecting pitcher Cal Quantrill to return from a shoulder injury soon after he looked good in a rehab start on Saturday.
When he returns, he will take Syndergaard’s place in the rotation.
The Guardians are Syndergaard’s fourth team in the past two seasons, with stops at both Los Angeles baseball teams and in Philadelphia.
Syndergaard was hoping after the trade from the Dodgers this season that he could have a fresh start in Cleveland.
“It’s a balance between a lot of excitement and a little bit of just disappointment in myself because my time with the Dodgers didn’t necessarily go as planned,” Syndergaard told reporters after the trade, according to The Athletic. “Didn’t really blossom into the pitcher I wanted to be. But maybe just a fresh start with the Guardians is really all I need to bounce back and just start fresh.”
Some of Syndergaard’s best years came when he was pitching in Queens for the Mets.
He finished fourth in Rookie of the Year voting in 2015 and eighth in Cy Young voting in 2016.
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