Noah Syndergaard talks making baseball 'cool': 'I want to be the Hero'

The Mets' ace has embraced the attention he's getting around New York.
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The real Thor might actually reside on the fictional planet of Asgard – but the New York Mets starting pitcher prefers calling the Big Apple home.

Luckily for Mets fans, Noah Syndergaard, who recently partnered with Cholula Hot Sauce, expressed his love for New York City in an interview with PEOPLE on Thursday.

“I love the New York spotlight. I love being the guy. I want to be the hero,” Syndergaard said. “I would actually love spending my entire career in New York City. They’ve got great fans and it’s fun to play baseball here”

“Fun” has always been 24-year-old Syndergaard’s focus — even since he’s been sidelined with a lat injury since late April.

In February, he told Sports Illustrated that he and division rival Bryce Harper share one key goal: making baseball fun again.

The long, blonde wigs and Viking helmets that Mets fans wear to Citi Field every time Syndergaard takes the mound contribute to major league baseball’s sense of fun, and Syndergaard has embraced becoming a cultural phenomenon.

That’s why he doesn’t mind when people in New York City stop him and ask for photos or autographs.

“I love being able to walk around. When people notice me, that means that baseball is still cool and exciting,” Syndergaard says. “The more fans I can draw to the game and the more people I can impact, the better.”

Syndergaard got his Norse nickname when he was in the Toronto Blue Jays organization. His superhero-like frame, flowing blonde hair, and last name that rhymes with Thor’s fictional home planet of “Asgard” made the moniker a no-brainer.

Ironically, Syndergaard has had a dog named Thor since his junior year of high school – long before New York City even sniffed the legend of Thor.

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