College Confidential

Locals knew the Legend of Thor long before the Big Apple

Former Mansfield Legacy standout Noah Syndergaard is playing big in the Big Apple with the New York Mets.
Former Mansfield Legacy standout Noah Syndergaard is playing big in the Big Apple with the New York Mets.

Thor went full beast mode for the New York Mets on Wednesday, holding the Los Angeles Dodgers to two runs through eight innings and pounding not one, but two home runs for his New York Mets.

Noah Syndergaard, the Mets’ young right-hander, is now growing his own legend. Folks from around here who follow baseball have known of the 6-foot-6, 240-pounder with the long blond locks for some time. Mets fans were already swooning for the up-and-coming super hero from Mansfield Legacy High School well before he put his powers to use in the Mets’ win at Dodger Stadium.

(Check out Syndergaard, who is 3-2 this season with a 2.53 ERA and 55 strikeouts in 46.1 innings, roaming the streets of Manhattan dressed as Thor.)

On Friday, New York Post baseball writer Kevin Kernan, delved deeper into Syndergaard’s roots, contacting former Legacy baseball coach David Walden, who coached Syndergaard his senior season and is quite familiar with his Thor-like power swinging the hammer at the plate.

“Noah was a great hitter and was going to go to Dallas Baptist University as a hitter and not a pitcher,” Walden, who now coaches at Willis High School, told Kernan. “That performance [Wednesday night] does not surprise me at all.”

Walden relayed a humorous story about a donkey that roamed the pasture beyond the outfield fence of the Legacy baseball field. That donkey became quite acquainted with Syndergaard and his long balls flying into his field.

“At the baseball field [at Mansfield Legacy] beyond the fence, they had a pasture and they had a donkey in this pasture,” Walden said. “And Noah used to hit a bunch of home runs in practice and games into that pasture, and every time he hit a home run into that pasture, that donkey would start getting mad and start making loud donkey sounds. The donkey would be going crazy.

“I was going to call Noah and say, ‘Hey, were there any donkeys out there last night getting (upset) at you hitting balls into their field?’ Noah is such a great kid. I’m so happy for him. As soon as I saw those home runs, I thought about how he (upset) that donkey [got] all the time.

“Noah hit some tape-measure jobs, that donkey wasn’t just right across the fence. It was the fence, then there is some school property and then there is this barbwire fence on the other side that separates the school property, about 20 yards, from this guy’s pasture.

“That’s where that donkey is at.”

And the legend of Noah Syndergaard grows.