Starting Noah Syndergaard is Managerial Malpractice

Terry Francona has some explaining to do...
Terry Francona has no excuse for continuing to start Noah Syndergaard.
Terry Francona has no excuse for continuing to start Noah Syndergaard. / Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

Trading for Noah Syndergaard was a totally bizarre move for the Cleveland Guardians. But I was willing to give it a chance before judging it. It's not like we were getting much from Amed Rosario, and it would have been kind of fun if Thor somethow turned things around down the stretch.

Start number one was even kind of promising (if you ignored all the advanced stats). Then start number two made it painfully obvious that he wasn't suddenly a new pitcher now that he was freed from the vice and distraction in L.A. Starts three and four showed more of the same.

So when Terry Francona decide "yes, let's give Syndergaard his fifth start," was anyone expecitng anything different than what actually happened?

If you were, it was probably only becuase you didn't think it could've been quite this bad.

As I pen this, Syndergaard has allowed 3 earned runs and three stolen bases through 4.0 innings against his former team. He entered the game with an egregious 6.57 ERA, and he may well make it worse before the night is out.

But as some point, all of this stops being Syndergaard's fault. If an MLB manager decided to put me on the mound to start a game and I broke the metrics with an infinity ERA, would that really be my fault? Or would the blame land on the manager who decided that I should start an MLB game?

Noah Syndergaard is who he is. His job is to pick up the ball when he's asked to and do his best. The manager's job is to know when to stop asking him to pick up the ball.

We all love Terry Francona, but he's absolutely bungling this situation. Even if you want to keep fighting for a Wild Card spot until we're mathematically eliminated, it's not like Syndergaard is a "win-now" guy. It almost literally could not get any worse.

So why are we having Syndergaard start games instead of letting some more young guys build up major league experience?

I get that Tito is retiring soon and doesn't have to worry too much about the long-term outlook of this franchise, but the Guardians are quietly building one of the most promising young pitching staffs in baseball, and we should keep exploring on that front.

I get that the organization isn't rich with almost-ready pitching talent in the minors, but do we honestly think seeing what we've got with a guy like Joey Cantillo or even jumping Tanner Burns up from Double-A could somehow be worse than what we're getting with Syndergaard? We're already waving the white flag by starting him, and if you're going to tank games like that then you should at least do it with the future in mind.

Maybe the only plus side coming from Syndergaard starting these days is that Guardians fans can still cash in betting on those games — either on or against Cleveland. With Bet365's exclusive new-user promo, you just need to place a $1 bet on the game and you'll get a guaranteed $200 bonus payout, win or lose! Just sign up and deposit at least $10 through the exclusive Factory of Sadness link below to qualify for the guaranteed bonus before the offer expires!

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