Steven Matz, 24, had just six major league starts in his career before his postseason debut in Game 4 of the National League Divisional Series at Citi Field Tuesday night. The Suffolk County Native pitched well but was over matched by the three time NL Cy Young winner even on three days' rest. The Mets lost game four 3-1 and the Los Angeles Dodgers forced a fifth game on their home field.
Matz pitched five innings, allowed 3 runs on six hits, and two walks. His stat line was not spectacular but the bulk of the damage all came in the third inning when he gave up three runs.
“I gave up three runs,” Matz said. “And when you’re going against Kershaw, you’ve got to put up zeroes.”
Matz looked well throughout his outing. His stats were better than Matt Harvey's game three performance the difference was he was going against Kershaw and didn't have 13 runs of support. Instead he had one. Kershaw looked unhittable. He let up just three hits over seven innings and struck out eight. The one run came on his only mistake of the night a solo shot to Daniel Murphy in the forth.
“I felt good right out of the gate,” Matz said. “It was just one bad inning that got me. I’ve got to make better pitches in those spots.”
It was the first start Matz made since Sept. 24 and even then only recently made his comeback from a back injury. Despite the loss he proved he is reliable enough to pitch in these big moments. Terry Collins was impressed by his outing as well stating, “Other than [the third inning], he was outstanding, outstanding. We’ve got all the confidence in the world that if we get to the next round, he’s going to be a part of that rotation.”
“Right now, we’re saying, ‘Hey, if you can give us five or six innings and limit the damage, you’ve got to like where we’re at,’ ” Collins said before the game and if the Mets are fortunate enough to advance, this is all they would need from the young lefty.
Now the NLDS all comes down to the suspenseful game five. DeGrom will square off against Zack Greinke both of which are considered Cy Young candidates.