LOS ANGELES – Finding starting depth has been a top priority for the Dodgers this offseason. On Wednesday, they acquired right-hander Noah Syndergaard to a one-year, $13 million deal, multiple sources told MLB.com.
The deal is not official and the club has not yet confirmed the move.
After a promising start with the Mets, Syndergaard, popularly nicknamed “Thor,” battled injuries from 2017-21, but eventually managed to stay healthy and had a season with the Angels and Phillies. 22. The 30-year-old went 10-10 with a 3.94 ERA in 25 games (24 starts) last season and helped stabilize the Phillies’ rotation that reached the World Series.
Syndergaard entered the majors as a solid pitcher, but has recently been plagued by injuries. Prior to the 2020 season, he relied on his sinker-slider combo and averaged 93-94 mph in his warmup, as opposed to 97-98 mph prior to Tommy John surgery.
Even though his stuff looks different, the Dodgers believe Syndergaard can still be effective and is exactly what they need in a starting rotation that needs help heading into the offseason. Now that he’s a few seasons removed from Tommy John, there could be a speed bump.
With a big hole to fill in the back end of the rotation, the Dodgers are banking on Syndergaard to continue his strong production. After losing Tyler Anderson and Andrew Hayne in free agency and losing Justin Verlander earlier in the offseason, Los Angeles is in the market for a back-end starter.
There were plenty of options in the Dodgers’ arsenal, but Syndergaard was the straw that ultimately drew Los Angeles. Getting Syndergaard to a one-year deal would also help the Dodgers have more flexibility with their payroll next summer. With a one-year deal on his hands, the righty was determined to land with the Dodgers, given his experience getting the best out of players.
It’s been a pretty quiet season for the Dodgers, especially when you consider what the Giants, Padres and Mets have been able to accomplish. But Los Angeles expects to feel confident with its core heading into next season. Now, it’s up to the roster to continue the record, and the Dodgers believe they’ve done that — at least on the ballot side — by signing Syndergaard and JP Feyereisen for relief with the Rays.