Dodgers Team News

Dodgers News: Noah Syndergaard Testing Unorthodox Method in Effort to Get Back

Noah Syndergaard gets the ball for the Dodgers for the first time in nine days later this afternoon. The right-hander skipped a turn through the rotation to work on some mechanical things, according to manager Dave Roberts.

The season so far hasn’t been great for Syndergaard. He’s struggled to keep runs off the board, as evidenced by his 6.32 ERA over 6 starts. He’s also been unable to regain the lost velocity he hoped to get back after signing with the Dodgers.

Recently, he opened up to the Los Angeles Times about some mental hurdles — or “blocks” he’s trying to clear his mind of. He said he feels still mentally restricted to let the fastball rip since undergoing Tommy John surgery in 2020.

And in an effort to clear that block, he’s trying everything… including hypnotization.

Several times in recent weeks, the pitcher has followed this new routine, slipping into a mind-numbing trance as mental skills coach Brent Walker hypnotizes him — literally — while seated by his side.

“I’ll try just about any resource I have,” Syndergaard said. “Just to snap out of it.”

Via Jack Harris

Harris provides a deep dive into Syndergaard’s current state of mind while he attempts to return to the guy he was as recently as 2018, so it’s worth a read for the full treatment. But a few more takeaways echo a sentiment Thor has discussed since the earliest days of spring training. Something just isn’t quite there all the time mechanically.

“I know it’s in there. I try to be explosive, 110%,” he said. “But my movement just isn’t efficient.” … “I feel like I’m super close,” he said. “I’ve been working really hard for the last four months now. And the work ethic and the desire and the will is always gonna be the same. That’s the easy stuff.”

He gets another shot to right the ship this afternoon in Milwaukee. It’s been more than two months since his best outing of the season, his first start of the year where he went 6 innings allowing 1 run while striking out 6. Since then he has a 7.46 ERA and has fans concerned the Mark Prior magic might not be enough to help.

Dave Roberts confirmed recently that Syndergaard will get plenty of leash to figure it out in LA.

Clint Pasillas

Clint Pasillas has been writing, blogging, and podcasting about the Los Angeles Dodgers since 2008. Under Clint's leadership as the Lead Editor, Dodgers Nation has grown into one of the most read baseball sites in the world with millions of unique visitors per month. Find him online on Twitter/X or his YouTube channel!

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