Syndergaard bests Verlander in returns, Halos high Astros 2-0

ANAHEIM, Calif. – Noah Syndergaard pitched two-hit ball into the sixth inning in a powerful Angels debut, narrowly outdueling fellow Tommy John surgical procedure returnee Justin Verlander in Los Angeles’ 2-0 victory over the Houston Astros on Saturday night time.

Mike Trout and Jared Walsh homered within the Angels’ first victory of the season. The Halos held defending AL champion Houston to 2 hits, with Raisel Iglesias‘ save capping 3 2/3 hitless innings from the bullpen.

Syndergaard (1-0) and Verlander (0-1) both are back this season from lengthy absences after elbow surgery, and both veterans performed impressively at Angel Stadium.

Syndergaard yielded two weak singles and two walks over 5 1/3 innings. While the imposing right-hander known as Thor had just one strikeout, he induced 11 groundouts from the Astros’ highly effective lineup.

Verlander pitched 5 innings of one-run ball, giving up three hits – together with Walsh’s homer – and three walks whereas escaping a number of spots of bother. He struck out seven, together with AL MVP Shohei Ohtani twice.

Trout’s first homer since May 4 was a magnificence, touring 445 toes off a 98.8-mph fastball – the quickest pitch Trout has ever hit out of the yard – from Ryne Stanek. The three-time AL MVP missed the ultimate 4 1/2 months of final season with a calf harm.

Syndergaard was restricted to 2 one-inning appearances – each late final yr – for the Mets over the previous two seasons whereas working his method again from surgical procedure. He signed a one-year, $21 million cope with Los Angeles and emerged from spring coaching with a wholesome arm and a willpower to point out he’s again.

Verlander had surgical procedure in September 2020 and missed final season whereas recovering. Now 39, the two-time AL Cy Young winner feels he’s able to resuming his profession at his customary elite stage, and his return begin appeared promising.

Walsh mashed Verlander’s first pitch of the second inning to deep middle for the Angels’ first homer of the season.

Verlander struck out Ohtani twice with inside pitches that painted the black, though each calls displeased the AL MVP. Verlander celebrated with a refined fist-pump after he escaped a fifth-inning jam by fanning Ohtani after which retiring Trout on a flyout to strand two Angels.


Syndergaard is carrying No. 34 once more for the Angels, as he did in New York, but it surely has a particular which means in Anaheim.

It’s additionally the quantity worn by Nick Adenhart, the promising Angels starter killed by a drunk driver just a few hours after throwing six shutout innings on the Big A precisely 13 years in the past Saturday. Syndergaard received the blessing of Adenhart’s household to put on the quantity, which hadn’t been worn by an Angels participant since.


Angels SS David Fletcher and Astros 3B Alex Bregman didn’t begin to relaxation. Fletcher flied out as a pinch-hitter within the seventh, and Bregman popped out within the ninth. … Astros RHP Lance McCullers Jr. might begin throwing subsequent week, supervisor Dusty Baker stated. McCullers’ flexor tendon difficulty saved him out of spring coaching.


Angels LHP Jose Suarez makes his season debut within the sequence finale towards Houston’s Jose Urquidy. Both pitchers gained eight video games whereas breaking by means of as full-time starters final season.

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