Mets: Steven Matz makes ’17 debut, pitches seven sharp innings
Steven Matz got a late start to the 2017 season due to injury, but his return was seven innings of one-run ball in a victory over Atlanta
June 10th was a good day for the New York Mets. In reverse order, the nightcap saw Steven Matz make his much anticipated return to the hill and it was a good one. Matz allowed just one run over seven innings as the Mets capped a two-for-one day against Atlanta with a 8-1 victory after a 6-1 triumph earlier in the day.
Matz made good use of the curveball early on and it was very effective. He threw that pitch for strikes and got some bad swings off it. By the end of his time on the mound for the evening, the curve lost a little sharpness but overall it was solid. Matz also started to use the changeup more after the fourth inning.
The final line for Matz: 7.0 innings, 5 hits, 1 run, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts. 67 of his 98 pitches went for strikes and Matz was hardly in trouble early in counts. Matz didn’t have to deal with a whole lot of traffic either. Atlanta was 1-for-4 with runners in scoring position. The one hit came in Matz’s last inning of work. Matz had slightly more flyouts (10) than groundouts (8) on the night.
After what has been two months of torment on the injury front, Saturday offered a glimmer of hope. Yoenis Cespedes made his return in the front end of the doubleheader and hit a grand slam to bust the game open. Matz’s sharp debut in the second game marked the culmination of a day where the Mets got two important pieces back in their dugout.
This is only restating the obvious, but Matz’s key is just to stay healthy. We’ve seen the talent in shorter stretches over the past couple of years. Now it’s just about keeping him on the mound every fifth (or maybe sixth for the moment) day.
Next: Mets should start looking towards the future in the offseason
The Mets will get another piece back on Sunday when Seth Lugo makes his season debut. Now that most of the injured pieces are back, it’s just about keeping them healthy and maybe the Mets can start to pick up a little momentum.