Noah Syndergaard is in the Best Shape of His Life

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Last year Mets ace Noah Syndergaard showed up to camp following an intense offseason workout regime that left him with 17 extra pounds of muscle. I don’t think he ever officially declared himself to be in The Best Shape of His Life, but it was definitely one of those body transformation stories which signaled as much.

Once the season started, though, he only made seven starts due to a series of injuries. Injuries many speculated were attributable to his extra bulk and strength. So, in age-old Best Shape of My Life tradition, the guy who bulked up last year is focusing on slimming down this offseason. From MLB.com (seen via Metsmerized.com):

“Arm feels great. Never really felt better. My body’s never felt better. I realized how jacked up my body was last year, and I’ve been working extra hard to make sure it’s loose and it’s limber and as mobile as it can possibly be.”

Meanwhile, on some other team, there is no doubt a guy who lost weight and worked on his flexibility last year who will soon tell a reporter he needed to bulk up this offseason in order to fight off fatigue and stuff in the coming year.

Blue Jays clinch playoff berth with Orioles’ loss to Red Sox

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TORONTO — The Blue Jays clinched a postseason berth Thursday without taking the field.

Toronto was assured of an AL wild card berth when the Boston Red Sox beat the Baltimore Orioles 5-3.

If Toronto holds its current position as the first of the AL’s three wild cards, the Blue Jays would open a best-of-three wild-card series at Rogers Centre next week.

“These guys are excited to be in this position,” Blue Jays manager John Schneider said after Wednesday’s 8-3 loss to the New York Yankees. “You’ve got three really good pitchers lined up against a good Boston team, playing at home. So I think it’s more excitement more than it’s nerves or anything. I think the guys are going to come out and be ready to roll on Friday night.”

Toronto became the fourth AL team to clinch a playoff berth, joining division champions Houston, the Yankees and Cleveland. The Astros and Yankees have first-round byes.

The Blue Jays last went to the playoffs in 2020, when they were knocked out with two straight losses to Tampa Bay.

Eight of the 12 berths in the expanded postseason have been clinched: The Los Angeles Dodgers and St. Louis earned division titles, and Atlanta and the New York Mets are assured no worse the wild cards while still competing to win the NL East. The Dodgers have a first-round bye.