February 25, 2021

Mets’ Noah Syndergaard battling to reach his Gerrit Cole level (New York Post)

PORT ST. LUCIE — If he were not 6-foot-6 and did not have the Norse god nickname and he cut his hair short and kept his shirt on, Noah Syndergaard would be viewed as being five years into an impressive career.

In that time, he has been roughly the 25th-best starter in the majors, good enough to be someone’s ace in a 30-team league, no worse than a quality No. 2.

But Syndergaard is as likely to shrink from 6-foot-6 as dismiss the Thor tag and persona. He is revolting against who he was as a kid — “the exact opposite” he says during a 20-minute sit-down with The Post. He was not an Adonis, not bold in words and deeds. “I was super bashful, not wanting attention.”

So he willingly embraces the cartoonish qualities in his life, the outsized projections.

“It’s certainly a choice,” Syndergaard said. “I see it as a positive challenge. To have the moniker of Thor and expectations to live up to it.”

He will post quips and shirtless pics on social media and try not to let the trolls ruin his mood. On Saturday, while stretching and with dozens of Mets fans looking on, the team’s pitchers went topless to playfully mock Syndergaard, who for this occasion was…

Read “Mets’ Noah Syndergaard battling to reach his Gerrit Cole level” at New York Post