With September right around the corner, there is no shortage of prospects who the New York Mets will consider calling up for the final month of the season. However, one prospect that the Mets should not consider calling up is the team’s top prospect Noah Syndergaard. Although the fanbase would love to see a glimpse of him in September to get a clearer view of the Mets’ future, there is no reason for the team to expose him to the big leagues at this point.
The Mets will have to have to add Syndergaard to the 40-man roster this offseason in order to protect him from the Rule 5 Draft, so it would be easy to add him to the roster in September and give him a few starts, but that doesn’t mean they should. Syndergaard may be a big part of the team’s future, but he hasn’t exactly earned a big league promotion based on his performance in Triple-A this season, as he has put up an ERA of 4.85 and a WHIP of 1.50.
His walk rate is far higher than it was in 2013, and despite some improvement over the second half of the season, he’s been inconsistent all season. He’s simply not ready to pitch in the big leagues yet, even in meaningless September games.
Moreover, at the start of September, Syndergaard will be barely 22 years old, which is awfully young for a player who’s spent a full season in Triple-A, much less for someone playing in the big leagues. At his age, there’s no reason for the Mets to rush Syndergaard to the majors, even for a cameo appearance, when it’s obvious that he needs to continue to develop as a pitcher.
Syndergaard is also on an innings limit this season, and likely has just four or five starts left before he maxes out. With the Mets’ Triple-A affiliate in Las Vegas heading to the postseason, Syndergaard will most likely get at least one or two additional starts after the end of the minor league regular season. By the time the Triple-A postseason is over, Syndergaard may not have any innings left for a big league cameo anyway. Pitching in the triple-A playoffs does hold some value from a developmental standpoint, and is a fine substitute for 2-3 big league appearances this season.
In all likelihood, Syndergaard will be back in Triple-A at the start of the 2015 season, as it’ll be awfully difficult to make the Mets’ Opening Day rotation next season with all the pitching depth they have. With Syndergaard unlikely to join the big league rotation full time until at least a couple of months into the 2015 season, and with plenty of developing left to do, there’s no need for the Mets to rush him to the big leagues by bringing him up in September.