Syndergaard earns 1st big league win, Mets beat Brewers
NEW YORK (AP) Even before Noah Syndergaard could talk about stamping his place in the majors, the prized Mets pitching prospect wanted to start with a statement: ''I hope Gomez is OK.''
Syndergaard earned his first big league win, the success tempered when he beaned Milwaukee star Carlos Gomez with a 96 mph fastball, and New York beat the Brewers 5-1 Sunday.
As Syndergaard spoke postgame, the report from the Brewers' clubhouse was encouraging. Struck in the earflap of his helmet, Gomez had already passed the concussion protocol and hoped to play Monday night in Detroit.
''Lucky, man,'' said Gomez, a big, C-shaped red welt wrapping around his left cheek.
Syndergaard (1-1) shut down the Brewers for the first five innings in his Citi Field debut, giving up just one single. In the sixth, he gave everyone a scare.
After a leadoff single, Syndergaard squarely hit Gomez. The two-time All-Star outfielder went face down in the dirt for a few seconds, and Syndergaard clapped into his glove when Gomez was helped into a sitting position by two Milwaukee trainers.
''It's never really happened,'' Syndergaard said. ''It kind of rattled me a little bit.''
Gomez walked off the field with the trainers at his side and was replaced by a pinch runner.
While Gomez got assistance, Mets manager Terry Collins went to the mound to speak with the 22-year-old rookie.
''You could tell he was shook up,'' Collins said.
Ryan Braun had an RBI single later in the inning. Syndergaard left after the sixth in his second game for the NL East leaders, having allowed three hits, striking out five and walking one.
Collins was impressed with how Syndergaard settled down after the accident, and with his preparation for this outing.
''He doesn't just go out there and say, `Hey, I've got great stuff, I'm just going to pitch,''' Collins said.
Curtis Granderson hit a leadoff home run, Lucas Duda doubled twice and Michael Cuddyer drove in two runs to help the Mets win their second straight after a five-game skid.
Wily Peralta (1-5) had won all three of his previous three starts against the Mets. He quickly fell behind when Granderson connected on the second pitch for his 30th career leadoff homer.
A night earlier, Granderson singled during a 10-run burst in the fourth inning, and later homered to close out a 14-1 romp. Last-place Milwaukee has lost four of five.
Syndergaard actually pitched once before on the Citi Field mound, starting the 2013 All-Star Futures Game. Beaten by the Cubs at Wrigley Field five days earlier, he showed the home fans why the Mets are so high on him.
The 6-foot-6 Syndergaard came out zinging fastballs that topped out at 98 mph, and the pops from catcher Johnny Monell's mitt echoed all around the ballpark. At times, he brought back memories of another rookie righty from Texas who also wore No. 34 when he debuted for the Mets a long time ago - Nolan Ryan.
Syndergaard is currently taking the fifth spot in the rotation earlier held by Dillon Gee, who's on the disabled list. Collins has said the Mets will see how things shake out when Gee is ready to return.
''I know those decisions are coming down the line,'' Collins said.
Mets: 3B David Wright (hamstring) is set to begin baseball activities on Monday. ... Closer Bobby Parnell (Tommy John surgery) has a 12.71 ERA in six rehab appearances for Class A St. Lucie. He'll likely pitch at a higher level in his next outing, and Collins said Parnell would probably be in ''different surroundings.''
Brewers: Milwaukee makes its first trip to Detroit since 2009. Mike Fiers (1-4) starts, trying to help the Brewers beat the Tigers for the first time since Ben Sheets was the winning pitcher in 2007.
Mets: Matt Harvey (5-1, 2.31) faces St. Louis righty John Lackey. The Cardinals are the only team to twice beat Harvey in the majors - he's 0-2 in two starts against them.
Mets closer Jeurys Familia pitched a perfect ninth. Collins said he planned to use to Familia for an inning no matter the score because he hadn't thrown for a while. Juan Centeno hit a sharp grounder off the back of Familia's calf, and the pitcher recovered to make the play for the final out. Familia seemed staggered for a moment, but Collins said he was all right.