Matz’s changeup came in nine ticks slower than his sinker and suffered from a lack of vertical movement. Batters smashed ten taters off the pitch which led to a .257 ISO.
Surrendering the long ball has been a point of frustration for Matz’s curveball over the past two seasons, as 2019’s 28.6% HR-FB rate actually improved on 2018’s staggering 38.5% mark. When not getting parked in the cheap seats, the curve generates a strong 38.8% strikeout rate despite an unimpressive 44th-percentile spin rate on Statcast.
Matz’s primary pitch is a sinker, which comes in at 93 mph. The pitch hit the zone 55.4% of the time but allowed a career-high 28.6% LD%. On the other hand, it also allowed a career-best 15.3% HR/FB%, an impressive feat in the juiced ball era.
Matz’s slider hit a career-low 9.7% K%, which was the result of an 8.9% SwStr% and a four-year low 24.2% O-Swing%.
The sinker was Matz’s primary offering in 2018 at 59.4%. It had a fairly modest whiff rate of 18.5%. While it held hitters to a modest .234 batting average it was charged with allowing 13 home runs and was overall a negative pitch with a -4.5 pVal.
Matz threw his changeup almost exclusively to right-handers (397/426). It had a whiff rate of 29.7% a zone rate of 56.7% and a chase rate of 34.1%. At 84.1 mph it has good differential off his fastball which sits at 93 mph. Overall the change was an effective pitch with a 3.3 pVal.
Matz’s curve, which sits at roughly 10 mph slower than his slider at 78.5 mph, was an effective pitch in 2018 that had a 30.3% whiff rate and held hitters to a .263 wOBA and .207 batting average. It also notched a 48.2% zone rate and 36.1% chase rate.
Matz’s slider had a 26.3% whiff rate and held hitters to a .265 wOBA and .241 batting average. It wasn’t great at getting hitters to swing out of the zone with just a 25.9% chase rate. Overall, though, it was a positive pitch noted by a 2.9 pVal.