Maton’s curveball found the zone less for the second consecutive year to mixed results. Batters struggled to make decent contact, leading to a 45 wRC+. However, batters also chased the pitch less often leading to an increased BB% and a decreased K%.
Maton increased the Zone% on his fastball from 49.1% to 61.5%, which cut his BB% in half; however, that also put his fastball in the zone more often which batters took advantage of putting up a 156 wRC+. The pitch’s velocity also fell for the second consecutive year.
Statcast considers this pitch as a cutter, but it looks like it has more downward movement than a traditional cutter. Maton managed to get a 61.5% GB% on the pitch and while it had really solid 14% SwStr% and 46.3% O-Swing%, that led to just a 9.7% K%.
While Maton’s fastball fosters an above-average spin rate, major league hitters have plastered it to 12 homers and a .368 wOBA through two seasons. He endured a velocity dip while struggling to spot the pitch (49.1 zone% and 14.6% walk rate) in 2018. It’s easy to see why he sliced the ineffective offering’s usage rate from 76.0 to 61.2%.
A curveball/slider hybrid, Maton garnered a 7.0 pVal on his strong secondary offering last season. Even with its usage rate expanded to over 38%, the pitch ceded just four extra-base hits (three doubles and a homer) alongside a miniscule 57.9% contact rate. He’s not blowing anyone away with his fastball, so this is his key to sustaining a career 25.6% strikeout clip.