Livan Hernandez was a one-man gang last night in Atlanta

5 Comments

Not only did Livan Hernandez shut out the Braves for eight innings last night, he went 2-for-4 with a double and a homer at the plate in an 6-0 victory.
Hernandez now has 10 career homers, which ranks third among all active pitchers:

                      PA     HR
Carlos Zambrano      650     21
Mike Hampton         845     16
LIVAN HERNANDEZ     1042     10
Micah Owings         198      9
Yovani Gallardo      181      8
Dontrelle Willis     413      8

Hernandez has more plate appearances than everyone else on that list, so it’s not quite an apples-to-apples comparison. For instance, Hernandez ranks just 10th in OPS among active pitchers with at least 150 plate appearances:

                      PA      OPS
Micah Owings         198     .861
Yovani Gallardo      181     .690
Mike Hampton         845     .650
Carlos Zambrano      650     .637
Dontrelle Willis     413     .634
Adam Wainwright      331     .588
Dan Haren            287     .580
Russ Ortiz           608     .549
Darren Oliver        243     .543
LIVAN HERNANDEZ     1042     .532

On the other hand, Hernandez is the active hit king among pitchers with 204 and no one else is within 25 hits.

Noah Syndergaard: ‘I feel like I’m going to bet (on) myself in free agency’

Mike Stobe/Getty Images
7 Comments

Yankees starter Luis Severino and Phillies starter Aaron Nola both signed contract extensions within the last week. Severino agreed to a four-year, $40 million contract with a 2023 club option. Nola inked a four-year, $45 million deal with a 2023 club option.

While the deals both represented significant raises and longer-term financial security for the right-handed duo, some feel like the players are selling themselves short. It has become a more common practice for players to agree to these types of deals in part due to how stagnant free agency has become. Get the money while you can.

Mets starter Noah Syndergaard is in a similar situation as Severino and Nola were. He and the Mets avoided arbitration last month, agreeing on a $6 million salary for the 2019 season. He has two more years of arbitration eligibility left. A contract extension with the Mets would presumably cover both of those years plus two or three years of what would be free agent years. As Tim Britton of The Athletic reports, however, Syndergaard plans to test free agency when the time comes.

Syndergaard said, “I trust my ability and the talent that I have. So I feel like I’m going to bet (on) myself in free agency and not do what they did. But if it’s fair for both sides and they approach me on it, then maybe we can talk.” He clarified that he would be open to a conversation about an extension, but the Mets thus far haven’t approached him about it. In his words, “There’s been no traction.”

Syndergaard, 26, has been one of baseball’s better starters since debuting in 2015. He owns a career 2.93 ERA with 573 strikeouts and 116 walks in 518 1/3 innings. Among pitchers to have logged at least 400 innings since 2015 and post a lower ERA are Clayton Kershaw (2.22), Jacob deGrom (2.66) and Max Scherzer (2.71). Syndergaard made only seven starts in 2017 yet still ranks seventh among pitchers in total strikeouts since 2015.

If Sydergaard doesn’t end up signing an extension, he will be entering free agency after the 2021 season. The collective bargaining agreement expires in December 2021 and a new one will likely be agreed upon around that time. Syndergaard will hopefully have better prospects entering free agency then than players do now.