Apparently the Mets organization has moved on from treating a pitcher’s blister with pickle brine, as they did in 1968 when Nolan Ryan dealt with one. Mets ace Noah Syndergaard, whose Opening Day start was cut short by a blister, said Thursday the new remedy is “just putting this fancy cream on it and that’s about it.”
Asked for an update on how his middle finger is healing, Syndergaard quipped: “They don’t have to amputate it. I’ll be ready to go on Sunday.”
The big righty took some questions at an announcement of his partnership with Topps Now baseball cards, which capture big moments from games and are available online in an exclusive 24-hour window the following day.
Syndergaard’s treatment may be different than Ryan’s was, but he was still intrigued by Newsday’s Wednesday report in which Ryan said he’d been following the career of his fellow Texan.
“That’s awesome. . . . I didn’t realize that. It makes me feel good on the inside,” Syndergaard said. “Nolan Ryan is definitely a big idol of mine, just the way he went out there and there wasn’t any funny business. I think we all know that. It’s something I really admire and hope to emulate in my game as well.”
Syndergaard was everything the Mets could have wanted Monday against the Braves until the blister forced him from the game. He threw six scoreless innings with seven strikeouts without issuing a walk. He overpowered the Braves in two situations when they advanced a runner to third base in a scoreless game.
Manager Terry Collins said Syndergaard would have returned for a seventh inning were it not for the blister.
“When it first emerged, I guess, it started off as a blood blister,” Syndergaard said. “It was probably like that for about four innings. Then probably in the fifth is when it popped and that’s when it started to irritate me. But other than that it really hasn’t bothered me at all.”
Collins pushed Syndergaard’s scheduled Saturday start back by one day to give the finger extra time to heal. Robert Gsellman now faces the Marlins on Saturday before Syndergaard pitches the series finale Sunday night.
Mr. Met was on hand for the Topps announcement and Syndergaard took the opportunity for the latest installment of his long-running public ‘feud’ with the mascot, which has largely unfolded on social media. After describing the treatment on his middle finger, he showed it to the mascot and said with a grin “it’s this finger right here, Mr. Met.”