The Astros are still searching to fill a void in the starting pitching rotation. Could the Mets’ Noah Syndergaard be that missing piece of the puzzle?
Justin Verlander and Gerrit Cole are the only two pitchers locked in as starters for the upcoming season. The Astros are looking at all options to fortify the starting rotation. The New York Mets are listening to trade offers for Syndergaard and the Astros are reportedly one of several teams interested.
Syndergaard, the Mets #2 starter, has only been in the big leagues for four years but has already established himself as a highly regarded starting pitcher. He flaunts a career 2.93 ERA and a winning percentage of .627 with a 37-22 record. Syndergaard has been ranked twice in the top ten of all major league pitchers in WAR, a statistic that measures Wins Above Replacements for Pitchers.
His rookie season was in 2015, and he was fourth in the voting for the Rookie of the Year Award. In just the second year of his career, he was selected to play on the All-Star Team and put on the ballots for the National League MVP and CY Young Awards. As an added bonus, he has two years of postseason experience, recording an ERA of 2.42, with two wins and one loss.
Syndergaard is projected to earn $5.9 million in 2019, his second year of arbitration. He’ll still have two years of arbitration remaining before becoming eligible for free agency. This could be considered a bargain for a pitcher of his status. Having three years of controllability over Syndergaard would ease any pain of possibly losing one of the Astros’ pitching prospects.
According to Ken Rosenthal, the Mets may not be seeking all high-end prospects in a trade deal. It could be in the realm of possibilities that the Astros could still keep highly coveted Forrest Whitley and offer either Josh James or J.B. Bukauskas in the swap. After-all, Syndergaard is only 26 years old and has already proven himself in the major leagues.
Imagine Verlander, Cole, and Syndergaard as three of your five starters. If they could then retain Whitley and resign Charlie Morton in the process, the Astros could arguably have one of the best starting rotations in baseball.