NEW YORK — Noah Syndergaard took care of birthday gifts for his dad and manager with one scintillating start.
The Mets' prized prospect pitched six-hit ball into the eighth inning and connected for his first major league home run, and the New York Mets beat the Philadelphia Phillies 7-0 Wednesday to complete a three-game sweep.
"Tomorrow is my dad's birthday and when I asked him what he wanted all he asked for was a 'W'," Syndergaard said. "I think I gave him a little extra with that."
Syndergaard (2-2) struck out six in 7 1-3 innings to become the first rookie in Mets history to strike out at least five batters in each of his first four starts. He also went 3 for 3 at the plate, tying a franchise record for hits in a game by a pitcher — matched by Jacob deGrom earlier this month.
Lucas Duda homered twice in support of Syndergaard, who did not allow an extra-base hit and walked none in the longest start of his young career.
With only 96 pitches through seven innings, manager Terry Collins, who turned 66 Wednesday, let the right-hander begin the eighth. After third baseman Danny Muno robbed Darin Ruf of an apparent double, Collins removed Syndergard to a standing ovation from the crowd of 24,406.
"I thought it was important that he start that eighth inning and get over 100 pitches and really feel good when he walked off that mound," Collins said. "I thought he deserved it."
Duda, who also had three hits, put the Mets on the board in the first inning with a drive off Phillies right-hander Sean O'Sullivan (1-4). Duda homered again off Sullivan to lead off the fifth for his second multihomer game of the season.
"My sinker was flat, my slider was flat," O'Sullivan said. "He hit them both really hard."
Michael Cuddyer also homered as the Mets matched the run support they gave Syndergaard in his first three major league starts combined.
"Syndergaard was a one-man show today," Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg said. "He got it done with the bat and pitching."
The Mets broke the game open with three runs in the third, on Daniel Murphy's single and Cuddyer's two-run shot.
Syndergaard hit a long drive over the center field wall in the fourth inning to extend the Mets lead to five. He homered earlier this year for Triple-A Las Vegas and presented the ball to his mother for Mother's Day. This one, however, is earmarked for his father, Brad.
"Most definitely," he said with a smile. "This one has my dad's name written all of it."
The Mets added a run in the sixth on a sacrifice fly by Curtis Granderson.
Despite the offensive output, the afternoon belonged to Syndergaard, who was dominant in just his fourth major league start.
"I think the more you're out there the more you know you belong here," Collins said. "When that takes place, you have more confidence in your stuff and you're not afraid to miss and that's the way he pitched he pitched today."
Sean Gilmartin and Erik Goeddel finished the eight-hitter for the Mets, who extended their home winning streak against the Phillies to seven.
Mets: Collins did not provide a detailed update on rehabbing reliever Vic Black but did say that, "it was good to see that he went back-to-back (games) and had another decent inning". Collins also said that there is "no concern" over the "dead-arm stuff" that he suggested was plaguing pitcher Matt Harvey following his last start.
Dillon Gee (groin) went 6 1-3 innings for Double-A Binghamton against Portland. He allowed five hits, three runs, two earned, with two walks and struck out four. He threw 96 pitches.
Travis d'Arnaud (broken right pinkie) caught seven innings for Class A St. Lucie against Lakeland. He was 0 for 3 with three groundouts.
Phillies: After concluding their season-long stretch of 20 consecutive games without a day off, the Phillies will have Thursday off before welcoming the Colorado Rockies for a three-game series in their only visit to Citizens Bank Ballpark. Cole Hamels (5-3, 2.98 ERA) takes the hill in the series opener against Chad Betts (1-0, 4.19 ERA). Hamels defeated Colorado on May 18, allowing 1 run in 7 1-3 innings, striking out seven.
Mets: The Mets have Thursday off before welcoming the Miami Marlins to Citi Field for a three-game series. The Mets swept a four-game set from the Marlins in April. Matt Harvey (5-2, 2.91 ERA) takes to the mound for the Mets looking to rebound from his last start, when he gave up a career-worst seven runs and six hits in four innings against Pittsburgh. Harvey will be opposed by Dan Haren (4-2, 3.09 ERA).
KEEPING TABS OF THE ARMS
Mets pitching coach Dan Warthen said that after rehabbing pitcher Dillon Gee returns to the active roster, the Mets will likely stick with a six-man rotation through early-to-mid August. Warthen said the objective was to have the starters make roughly 30 starts instead of 33 to reduce the innings total of each pitcher.
All content copyright ©2015 Daily Journal, a division of Home News Enterprises unless otherwise noted.