Steven Matz‘s return to the rotation went as poorly as the rest of his season has. The Braves tagged him for six runs, eight hits, and three walks in just 2.2 innings. The loss dropped his record to 0-5, with his ERA rising to a horrific 9.79 on the season. Additionally, Matz gave up two homers, giving him 11 homers served up this season in 26.2 innings (3.7 HR/9). In the past, Matz has dealt with health issues, but he’s stayed healthy in 2018 and 2019. In 2020, outside of a brief shoulder injury, Matz has had no excuse for his poor performance. The Mets now have to decide on what to do with him.
Option 1: Move Matz to the Bullpen Permanently
The Mets moved Matz to the bullpen before his trip to the injured list. While he had a scoreless outing in his lone appearance, he moved back into the rotation this week. Additionally, if there has been anything positive to come from this season for Matz, it’s that his fastball velocity is up to 94 mph, and his strikeout rate is up to 10.1 K/9. This could translate well to a relief role, as it has in the past for players such as Andrew Miller.
DFA Steven Matz or Send Him to the Minors
If the Mets were to designate Matz for assignment, there may be a team that believes in him. After all, Matz was a top prospect at one point and has shown flashes in the past of the potential he once had. He may not have a ton of value, but he could net the Mets something, which is better than nothing.
Matz could just end up back in the minors if he clears a waiver. While it’s not ideal for a 29-year-old to be in the minors, a trip down could be exactly what Matz needs to fix himself. Although not a pitcher, that strategy certainly worked for the Cubs and Ian Happ, and it’s worked for others. Facing lower-level competition could rebuild Matz’s confidence, which could lead to better results in the majors.
Release Steven Matz
This is technically also a potential byproduct of Matz getting DFA’d. At this point, Matz has failed to meet the expectations that were set when he was in the minors. He has reached the point where maybe the best option for the Mets is to just go ahead and release him. They may not be able to get much in return if they were to trade Matz, as his trade value is in the tank. Additionally, it might provide him a better shot at reviving his career if he goes to a different organization.
The Verdict on Steven Matz
It will not be an easy decision for the Mets when it comes to Steven Matz’s future. While he could remain with the organization, he has proven that he shouldn’t be a starter anymore. Matz could revive his career as a reliever. However, his days in orange and blue may be numbered.
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