How Much Harder Can a Starter Throw? Noah Syndergaard Could Find Out

“I like to say it’s controlled violence,” Syndergaard said of the delivery that produces his high velocity.

Although data isn’t available from earlier eras in baseball, when the mound height and distance were different at times, Syndergaard’s average fastball velocity as a starter in 2016 might have been the fastest to date. It was at least the fastest since 2007, when advanced technology began reliably tracking the speed of pitches.

“The pitchers of old who were renowned for speed could not match up against their counterparts today, because of advances in physiology, training and philosophy,” said John Thorn, Major League Baseball’s official historian, who also noted that those pitchers of old made more starts and threw more innings than pitchers now.

Photo
Noah Syndergaard’s size (6 feet 6 inches and 242 pounds) and pitching mechanics have helped him throw so hard.

Credit
Jake Roth/USA Today Sports, via Reuters

That presumably would have slowed them down — at least a little bit.

Syndergaard seems intent on setting the bar even higher, having shown up for…

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