Terry Collins on Steven Matz: ‘He’s got to stay healthy’
Steven Matz is scheduled to start game four of the National League Championship Series opposite Jason Hammel of the Cubs.
Matz has only logged five competitive innings since injuring his back sleeping awkwardly in Philadelphia, forcing him to miss his start and ending his regular season prematurely as a result.
It was the second injury Matz has had to deal with in 2015. He tore a lat muscle in late June, causing him to spend two months on the disabled list.
And while Terry Collins is excited by the prospect of having Matz in the rotation on a regular basis, these injuries have left him concerned.
“He’s got to stay healthy, number one,” Collins explained. “This guy’s got plus stuff. He’s got a plus fastball. He’s going to be 94 to 97. He’s got a plus curveball. He’s got a good changeup. Now it’s a matter of going out there every five days through the course of the season that he has — you look up and there are some things that nag him.”
Collins said the club will work to ensure Matz can stay healthy for the length of a 162-game season starting in 2016, potentially by skipping some starts or cutting some starts short.
“Using all the things we try to do this year, perhaps keeping him short one night and maybe skipping him in the middle of the season so that he stays as healthy as he can,” the manager said. “But if you keep this — if this guy runs out there 28 to 30 times, he’s going to win some ballgames for you.”
Matz made only six starts in the big leagues in 2015. He went 4-0 with a 2.27 ERA, allowing ten walks with 34 strikeouts in 35 2/3 innings.