Mets RHP Noah Syndergaard struck out seven batters in five innings in his first rehab start with Short-Season Brooklyn on Sunday as he looks to return from a strained finger.
Pitching for the first time since May 25, Syndergaard allowed one run, two hits, one walk and two wild pitches, throwing 46 of 71 pitches for strikes. He reached 98 mph in the first inning and settled down after a rough first inning.
Syndergaard, who threw a 50-pitch simulated game last Tuesday, told reporters he was pleased with his outing and his finger felt fine. Mets brass said last week they hoped Syndergaard could return to the majors later this week, though Syndergaard said he will evaluate his next step on Monday.
Syndergaard was originally supposed to return from his injury on June 10 against the New York Yankees, but was scratched right before the series began and has been out since.
Facing the Staten Island Pizza Rats (the Yankees' Short-Season affiliate), Syndergaard allowed a leadoff walk, stolen base, single and a run-scoring wild pitch in the first inning as the Cyclones fell behind 1-0.
He settled down by retiring six straight batters between the second and fourth innings, but allowed a single and another batter to reach on a dropped third strike in the fourth. He pitched out of it by getting Eduardo Torrealba to line into an unassisted double play to second base.
Syndergaard struck out two of the last three batters he faced in the fifth inning.
Before going on the disabled list, the 25-year-old Syndergaard was 4-1 with a 3.06 ERA in 11 MLB starts this season, striking out 76 batters in 64 2/3 innings.