He’s a friendly, 21-year-old who describes himself as being “goofy’’ off the field, yet he’s driven in ways that show up in his work in the weight room, where his friends worry that he pushes himself to the point of risking injury, and even in the way he embraces the huge expectations that await his arrival in the big leagues, likely in June or July of 2014.
Photo by Michael Baron
“I wake up every day with the idea of giving it everything I’ve got,” he said on Tuesday at his old high school, after a morning of working out and then long-tossing...“Why are you so driven?” I asked, and Syndergaard didn’t hesitate.Another Matt Harvey? We'll take it.
“I want to make it to the big leagues and pitch against the best,” he said. “Hopefully I can make it to the Hall of Fame someday. Win a couple of Cy Youngs. Win a couple of World Series rings for the Mets...It’s all about never being satisfied,” he said.
Of course, there is a lot more than drive and desire that go into becoming an ace on a Major League team, but by all accounts Syndergaard is not short in talent. Hopefully Harper is right, and the kid has the mental makeup to become a real performer at the next level. There is almost no shot that he makes the rotation out of spring training, whether he has earned the position or not, because the team will be looking to keep his years of service to a minimum. However, he will hopefully make a debut a la the last two Mets pitchers, Wheeler and Harvey, where he makes a mid-summer splash in the bigs.