Matz Mostly Great in AAA Debut, but Bats Still in Hibernation | Astromets Mind

Friday, April 10, 2015

Matz Mostly Great in AAA Debut, but Bats Still in Hibernation

Las Vegas 51s @ Fresno Grizzlies

April 9, 2015

Steven Matz @ Brad Peacock


Las Vegas


W: Buchanan (1-0, 2.25 ERA); L: Church (0-1, 27.00 ERA)

The Highlights:


Steven Matz (1.69 ERA) – 5.1 IP, 3 H, R, 3 BB, 4 SO, 84 Pitches (50 Strikes), 5 GO: 2 FO
Zack Thornton (0.00 ERA) – 0.2 IP, H, SO, 1 GO, 1 IR – 1 S
John Church – 0.1 IP, 2 H, R, SO
Chasen Bradford (0.00 ERA) – 1.2 IP, H, 1 GO: 2 FO, 2 IR – 1 S


Eric Campbell – 1-3, R, BB, SO
Johnny Monell – 1-3


            Although he was often pitching with a runner on base, Steven Matz rarely looked in trouble over 5.1 very strong innings during his AAA debut with the Las Vegas 51s. There were no velocity reports from the Fresno announcers (and Russ Langer’s Tune In feed was down), but Matz had all 3 pitches working nicely Thursday night. If the 51s bats had been awake at all, the 51s could have walked away with an easy win, but Grizzlies veteran starter Brad Peacock was more than able to match Matz’s performance on this night. Peacock didn’t allow a hit during his 4.2 IP Thursday night, although he did allow 5 walks, which was the 51s primary source of base runners for the night. Although the new pitch clock was in full effect for this game, neither starter appeared to need any extra motivation to work quick from the get go, as this game was moving at a very quick pace early. After matching zeros through the first 5 innings of the game, Wally left Matz out there for the 6th with 11 pitches until he reached his set limit of 85. Matz made the first batter of the 6th look silly, but would walk the next batter on four pitches and leave the game with a runner on 1B. Thornton came in and allowed a single to the first batter he faced, putting runners on the corners with one out. He’d get the grounder to Reynolds that he needed, but the ball was hit too weakly to turn a double play, so a run scored (charged to Matz), and Fresno took their first lead. The 51s finally got their first two hits back-to-back starting the 7th, but would have to trade a double play groundout for the tying run, which put an end to any rally that might have started. John Church, who was promoted to Las Vegas when Erik Goeddel was promoted to the Mets, started the bottom of the 7th on the mound for Las Vegas. The Grizzlies would get back-to-back singles leading off the 7th against Church, before Santana struck out for the first out of the inning. Wally would go to Chasen Bradford with runners on the corners, but his first pitch was lined into left center field for an RBI double to give Fresno their second lead. Bradford would finish his outing very nicely, but the Las Vegas bats couldn’t get anything else going against the Grizzlies bullpen. The Las Vegas 51s will look to get their first win of 2015 behind Matthew Bowman Friday night at 10pm, but they will likely need more from their offense than they got tonight. Bowman was one of the biggest surprises of 2014, now he needs to prove it wasn’t a fluke – I don’t think it was a fluke for the record, he seems like a potential mid-to-back end starter at the highest level.

            Campbell led off the 7th by lining this single into CF.

            Monell would follow with a chopper into RF, and Campbell would go to 3B on the hit.

            Muno’s double play ended any threat, and the 51s had no other highlights on offense. Thornton and Church each had a strikeout from the pen:
Camera panned to it late, best I could do

Matz Coverage

1st inning

            Matz fell behind the first batter of the night 3-0, but would battle back to 3-2 before he finally walked him on a close pitch at the knees. He was ahead of the next batter 0-1, and then 1-2 before he got a weak grounder to Reynolds on a curveball, which started a double play. With the bases now clear, Duffy hit a 1-0 pitch to Dilson for the third out. Matz featured mostly fastballs in the 1st.

This was ball 4

Total: BB, 15 Pitches, 9 Strikes

2nd inning

            Matz allowed an 0-1 single to lead off the 2nd, but the problem was erased when the next pitch was grounded to Reynolds to start a double play. Matz would get ahead of Singleton 0-1 and 1-2, but it still took Matz 8 pitches to get the inning ending groundout to Dilson.

Drops in a breaker on 3-1

Total: H, 11 Pitches, 8 Strikes

3rd inning

            Matz got his first swinging strike of the game against the leadoff batter in the 3rd, but ended up walking him on 6 pitches. He fell behind the next batter 2-0, but Matz would recover to get a 2-1 fly out to RF. Matz would get the call to get ahead of Hoes 0-1, and then got him swinging on a 1-2 pitch for his first AAA strikeout – Hoes fouled off a nice inside curveball on the pitch before the K. Matz got Fontana to swing through the first pitch of his AB, and then Fontana popped out to Muno in foul territory on a 1-1 pitch.

Total: BB, LOBster, SO, 18 Pitches, 10 Strikes

4th inning

            Matz finally got an out to start an inning in the 4th, as Torreyes flared out to RF on the first pitch. Despite getting ahead of Duffy 0-2, Matz would allow a one-out single to him on a 2-2 pitch. Fortunately, Tucker hit the first pitch he saw to Dilson, which started a 4-6-3 double play.

Getting ahead of Duffy 0-1
Made it 0-2 on Duffy

Total: H, 8 Pitches, 6 Strikes

5th inning

            After falling behind 2-0 against Stassi leading off the 5th, Matz would battle back to strike him out swinging. Matz got ahead of Singleton 0-1 and 1-2, but couldn’t put him away, and then Singleton grounded a single up the middle. Matz was paying attention to Singleton at 1B with Santana up, but would get him to go down looking for his 3rd K of the night. Matz fell behind Dominguez 2-0, but battled back to make it 2-2 before Dominguez hit a weak fly out to CF.

Made it 2-1 against Stassi

Battled back to get him swinging
Got this over against Singleton
This made it 1-1 on Santana
Matz had the high strike working for him
Making Dominguez look bad

Total: H, LOBster, 2 SO, 22 Pitches, 13 Strikes

6th inning

            Matz got ahead of Hoes 0-1 leading off the 6th, then eventually made him look silly for Matz’s final K of the night. He’d walk Fontana on 4 pitches and exit having reached his pitch count.

Would start the sixth off right
Painting the inside corner at the knees
Just beats him inside

Total: R, BB, SO, 10 Pitches, 4 Strikes

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