While the Red Sox were wrapping up a 5-2 win over the Blue Jays in Boston on Sunday afternoon, All-Star festivities had already begun down south in the nation’s capital.
Yes, the Futures Game is always something to look forward to before the big names make their way to baseball’s Midsummer Classic, and yesterday, the Red Sox were represented by one prospect by the name of Bryan Mata.
Mata, 19, gave up one hit, one walk, and struck out one in a scoreless inning of work for the World team while consistently reaching 94-96 MPH with his two-seam fastball and 75-79 MPH with his curveball.
It certainly was not a clean outing for the Venezuela native, as he had runners on second and third with just one out, but he escaped any further damage, thanks in part to this strikeout of Rockies top prospect Brendan Rodgers for the second out of the inning.
Just look at the sweeping action on that curveball.
Ranked as the #2 prospect in the organization according to SoxProspects.com, Mata has been with the Red Sox since he signed as an international free agent on January 27th, 2016 as a 16 year-old out of Maracay, Venezuela.
Listed at 6’3″ and 160 lbs., Mata, a righty, owns a 3.42 ERA and 1.59 WHIP in 16 games started and 71 innings pitched for High A Salem this season.
Per SoxProspects, Mata has a, “Long way to go developmentally, but a very intriguing arm. Has the profile of a potential mid-rotation starting pitcher. Already shows the beginnings of a three-pitch mix and has a projectable frame. Has shown the ability to miss bats with both his fastball and changeup already, though his curveball lags behind. Physical development will be key given how skinny he is at present.”
Since he’s still so young, I would not expect Mata to sniff a Major League roster for at least another two years. The possibility of being used as a trade piece is certainly there, but in terms of Red Sox pitching prospects, he may be the most interesting one the organization has seen in a while.