Eye on MLB, June 28: Steven Matz impressive in debut for Mets

Another day in Major League Baseball, another top pitching prospect makes his major league debut for the New York Mets. This one's different, and not just because his name is almost "Mets," but Steven Matz makes for a left-handed complement to Noah Syndergaard and the other high falutin' prospects they have brought forth the past few years. Like Matt Harvey, Jacob deGrom, Zack Wheeler and Thor, he has a chance to be top-of-the-rotation good.

Matz throws about 95 mph with a curve that has emerged as his best breaking pitch. Overall, he has posted a 2.29 ERA with 380 strikeouts in 365 2/3 innings three-plus minor league seasons since having Tommy John elbow ligament replacement surgery. His numbers at Triple-A Las Vegas this are most encouraging:  A 2.19 ERA with 94 strikeouts in 90 1/3 innings is rarefied air, as CBS's own Chris Towers reported.

As for Matz against major-leaguers, he definitely looked the part on the hill (we'll get to his bat in a second). He'd last 7 2/3 innings -- which was huge for the Mets, considering they were just coming off a 13-inning affair earlier in the day -- giving up just two runs on five hits with three walks and six strikeouts. Credit Matz for quickly bouncing back, too, as the first batter he ever faced in the majors was Brandon Phillips, who hit a home run.

"I just thought, you know what, I just got my first batter out of the way and now it's time to go to work," Matz said after the game.

And that's exactly what he did.

Matz settled in and went to work. He was easily the best all-around player in the game. He was the winning pitcher as the Mets took the game, 7-2, and swept the series against the Reds. After a seven-game losing streak, the Mets have won four in a row.

Steven Matz had a historic debut at the plate.
Steven Matz had a historic debut at the plate. (USATSI)

For as good as he was on the mound, Matz was actually better with the stick. His first career at-bat was a two-RBI double. Next time up, he singled. In the bottom of the sixth, Matz stepped in with the bases loaded and a 3-2 lead. He'd single home two.

When the dust settled, Matz was 3-for-3 with a double and four RBI. He was hitting .304 (7-for-23) in Triple-A, so he can handle a bat pretty well.

This was the first time in recorded history (which goes back to 1914) that a pitcher had at least three hits and three RBI in his MLB debut. In fact, including all players, this just the 11th time that a player debuted with at least three hits and four RBI. Until this season, it hadn't happened since 1999, but Matz joins Mark Canha and Joey Gallo to make it three in 2015 who pulled it off (baseball-reference.com's play index has the full list).

There are no Mets on that list, by the way, so the only player in history to debut with the Mets with at least three hits and four RBI is Steven Matz.

That's one heck of a double-threat debut and it's certainly an act that will be tough to follow.

Final scores

Astros 3, Yankees 1: Recap | Box score

Braves 2, Pirates 1: Recap | Box score

Orioles 4, Indians 0: Recap | Box score

Dodgers 2, Brewers 0: Recap | Box score

Red Sox 5, Rays 3: Recap | Box score

Tigers 5, White Sox 4: Recap | Box score

Blue Jays 3, Rangers 2: Recap | Box score

Mets 2, Reds 1 -- in 13 innings (not the Matz game): Recap | Box score

Nationals 3, Phillies 2: Recap | Box score

Brewers 5, Twins 3: Recap | Box score

Giants 6, Rockies 3: Recap | Box score

Diamondbacks 6, Padres 4: Recap | Box score

Angels 3, Mariners 2: Recap | Box score

Royals 5, Athletics 3: Recap | Box score

Mets 7, Reds 2: Recap | Box score

Phillies 8, Nationals 5: Recap | Box score

Orioles 8, Indians 0: Recap | Box score

Cardinals 4, Cubs 1: Recap | Box score

A reminder about the Cardinals, who have lost one home game this month:

Milestone Watch

Longest active hit streak: It's still Jason Kipnis of the Indians. He came into Saturday riding a 20-game hit streak but the team's game was rained out. Kipnis will try to get hits in both ends of Sunday's doubleheader to extend his hitting streak. He's only 36 games short of tying Joe DiMaggio! UPDATE: Kipnis failed to record a hit in game one of the doubleheader Sunday, so it's over.

Pujols watch: Angels first baseman Albert Pujols is sitting on 1,650 RBI for his career. He's two shy of tying Tony Perez for 28th place all-time. He'll stay right there through Sunday, as he failed to collect an RBI.

Big Papi for extra bases

King Felix fun

Daily Awards

Happy Josh Beckett Day

Hey, he did help them win a World Series in 2003 (he was the MVP of the series!)

Ostrich ride of the day

Go Orbit!

Thief of the day

Juan Lagares keeps picking it in center

Bus of the day

This is pretty stout.

Transaction of the day

Pitcher home run of the day

Madison Bumgarner wasn't about to let Steven Matz have all the fun when it came to pitchers hitting well.

Injuries, News & Rumors

Royals Hosmer, Escobar leave Sunday's game with injuries

Padres 3B Will Middlebrooks leaves game against Diamondbacks

Cardinals SP Jaime Garcia (groin) may be bumped to Thursday

Cubs send Tsuyoshi Wada to DL; activate Neil Ramirez

Indians release Scott Atchison; promote Toru Murata

Marlins' Giancarlo Staton undergoes surgery on wrist Sunday

Hanley Ramirez heads back to Boston for MRI

Rays promote Grady Sizemore from minors; option Matt Andriese to Triple-A

Cubs slugger Kris Bryant not blaming fatigue for slump

Report: P Michael Feliz has left Double-A club to join Astros

Marlins' Jose Fernandez strikes out eight in likely final rehab start

Rangers' Josh Hamilton goes 1 for 4 in rehab game Saturday

Report: Mariners 2B Robinson Cano avoids concussion

Check out more player news here

Looking ahead to the final Monday in June:

Texas Baltimore 6:05 pm Rodriguez (4-3) - 4.06 ERA Norris (2-6) - 6.70 ERA ESPN
Milwaukee Philadelphia 6:05 pm Nelson (4-8) - 4.34 ERA O'Sullivan (1-5) - 5.34 ERA  
Boston Toronto 6:07 pm Buchholz (5-6) - 3.68 ERA Dickey (3-7) - 4.88 ERA  
Cleveland Tampa Bay 6:10 pm Anderson (0-0) - 0.00 ERA Karns (4-3) - 3.28 ERA  
Minnesota Cincinnati 6:10 pm Pelfrey (5-4) - 3.06 ERA Leake (5-4) - 3.91 ERA  
Kansas City Houston 7:10 pm Duffy (2-3) - 5.44 ERA McCullers (3-2) - 2.33 ERA  
L.A. Dodgers Arizona 8:40 pm Bolsinger (4-2) - 2.95 ERA Webster (1-1) - 6.46 ERA  
N.Y. Yankees L.A. Angels 9:05 pm Sabathia (3-7) - 5.65 ERA Wilson (5-6) - 3.92 ERA  
Colorado Oakland 9:05 pm Hale (2-2) - 5.86 ERA Graveman (4-4) - 3.86 ERA
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