The International prospect market, just when I thought I was free – you pull me back in! The Cardinals are going to sign pitcher Carlos Matias to a $1.5 million contract. Matias is already on the Cardinals DSL roster and has even already made an appearance!
Matias was suspended for a year last March after getting his much smaller deal with the Red Sox nullified. Matias is 18, which is why the Cardinals do not have to wait until July 2nd to sign him.
All the information about Matias is from Ben Badler of Baseball America. First from Twitter:
If the Matias deal with the Cardinals goes through, he might be the best pitcher any team signs this year on the international market.
At 6 feet, 165 pounds, Matias has a loose delivery and an electric fastball that can sit in the mid-90s and routinely hits 97-99 mph, according to several scouts from other organizations. Between the velocity and cutting action on his fastball, it is a true 80 pitch on the 20-80 scouting scale, already one of the best fastballs at any level of baseball.
“He has outstanding control,” said Moises Rodriguez, the Cardinals director of international operations. “People tend to get excited when you see velo in the high-90s, but he’s throwing upper-90s with excellent control.”
Matias’ secondary pitches have received mixed reviews, but he throws an average mid-80s changeup with good arm speed and sink as well as a 78-80 mph curveball that flashes late break.
Hit Ben Badler’s link for more information.
These scouting reports are always taken with a grain of salt, but Ben Badler always does his homework. ”One of the best fastballs at any level of baseball” is something that gets my attention as that is not a line that is heard much in International scouting reports.
UPDATE: Let’s throw an ice cold blanket on the whole proceedings because there obviously is a large chance Matias will not be certified again by MLB.