Postgame quotes from Fisher Cats manager Bill Masse and others.
Mathews Not Slowing Down in Career Year
The 5'10, 200 pound Mathews is having tremendous success in the batters box against southpaws. In 77 at bats this season against left-handers, he's hitting .377 (29-77) with three home runs.
One scout was really impressed with the way Mathews has kept hitting this season, and how hard he is to strike out.
"He puts the ball in play," the National League scout noted. "I've watched him a lot this season and he's been consistent with that he does. He's patient at the plate, goes up with a plan, and executes that plan."
The numbers agree with that assessment as Mathews has fanned just 47 times this season.
"He's also a versatile player defensively," the scout went on to say. "Although I project his best position as left field, he also has shown the ability to fill in center field if the club needs him."
The scout was worried about Mathews playing right field because of his arm.
"He has an average arm, but I don't think it's good enough to play in right field consistently."
Mathews began the season on a tear, and since has played even better. After batting .323 in April and .329 in May, his average has rose to .375 during the month of June. He has struggled slightly after the All-Star break batting just .250 in 48 at-bats, but has shown signs of breaking out of that slump this week going 4-for-8 in two games against rival Portland.
Mathews – projected to be a two-hole hitter by one scout – has batted fifth mostly for the Fisher Cats, although he's seen action batting second, third, sixth, seventh and even eighth.
"I like his approach better when he's batting at the top of the lineup. He won't draw the walks needed to be a leadoff hitter, but he has all the things needed to bat second. He makes contact, can hit the other way, and advance play situational baseball.
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