One of the “cavalry” Brian Matusz came to the Baltimore Orioles and Major Leagues with much fan fair. The Orioles drafted Matusz fourth overall in the 2008 MLB draft, and he signed with the Orioles on the deadline day. Matusz moved quickly through the Orioles minor league system and he made his debut in August of 2009. The Orioles hoped that Matusz would be a staple left-handed pitcher in the rotation for years.
When the Orioles drafted Matusz the word on him was that he was the most ready pitcher in the draft. Matusz had command of all his pitches and a great curve ball.
2010 was Matusz first full season starting and he pitched decently going 10 and 12 with a 4.30 era. Matusz looked like a promising young pitcher who was up and coming.
2011 however was much different as Matusz came to spring training a little out of shape and had an injury at the beginning of the season. Matusz missed the first two months of the season and got hit hard when he returned before getting demoted to triple-A Norfolk. Matusz’ final numbers were one and nine with a 10.69 era.
Matusz came into spring training 2012 in much better shape and won a starting job out of camp. Matusz did not hold onto that starting job however and was again demoted to triple-A Norfolk. When Matusz returned to the Orioles he pitched out of the bullpen and looked like a different more confident pitcher. Matusz has pitched out of the bullpen ever since.
Matusz has been lock down when pitching with inherited runners on base and against lefties. I think Matusz should stay in the bullpen as he has shown that he can struggle starting.
The Orioles originally rushed Matusz to the Major Leagues, I think he was physically ready but mentally he was not tough enough to pitch in the Big Leagues. The Orioles might want to give Matusz another chance at starting at some point because his draft spot was extremely high for a bullpen pitcher.
Here are Matusz’s career stats.