Like Noah Syndergaard Friday, Steven Matz is another young, stud pitcher the Mets wanted to delay bringing up, but instead is now in position to take this World Series into November. Syndergaard overcame early threats to strike out six in six innings and backed by two-run homers from David Wright and Curtis Granderson, the Mets stuffed Kansas City, 9-3, to make this a Series again.
Growing up in Long Island, Matz loved the Mets and dreamed of moments like Game 4 Saturday night. He just never thought he’d commute from his parents’ home to Citi Field to pitch in front of a raucous crowd and nationwide television audience with a chance to pull the Mets even.
After all, when you’re 24, single and a pro ballplayer in New York, the mindset is having a bachelor apartment in Manhattan: See: Joe Namath, Walt Frazier and Derek Jeter.
“I always thought about it,’’ said Matz, who made his major league debut with a 7-2 victory over Cincinnati and finished 4-0 with a 2.27 ERA.
“I didn’t know it was actually going to come to truth or whatever. It’s actually amazing. It’s pretty big blessing being here, especially my first year being a part of this team.’’
The Mets will try to get back into the Series with a left-hander who made only six starts. So confident the Mets are in Matz they chose him over Bartolo Colon and Jon Niese, or to bring back Matt Harvey on short rest.
“Matz will pitch Game 4, no matter what,’’ manager Terry Collins said.
Matz, like the others in the Mets rotation, throws hard, which could play into the hands of the Royals’ hitters, whose rep is to put the ball into play against mid-90s fastballs. Matz said he won’t try to fool the Royals with his secondary pitches, but go with his heater.
“I think we all look at every team we face and we have a game plan. That’s what we’re going to do,’’ Matz said. “We’re not going to change anything as far as that. We’re going to sit down and study the hitters and attack the hitters the way we believe we can get them out. So that’s what we’re going to do.’’
If he does, we could be in for a great ride.