Brian Matusz had himself a night against the Twins, pitching four innings with 7 strike outs, 5 ground outs, 1 walk, and 0 hits. With all of the requisite "spring training stats don't mean jack" and other sayings in place, he was awesome. The game wasn't broadcast on TV but both Joe Angel and Fred Manfra had nothing but good things to say about the way his pitches looked. According to Roch Kubatko's report, Matusz's fastball hit 91 regularly and topped off at 92, which is about as good as you're going to get from Matusz.
Another good sign is that 5 out of 7 of Matusz's strikeouts were of the swinging variety. And for a guy whose major concern is his inability to get out righties, he didn't have any trouble with that tonight. There were only three lefties in the lineup (Justin Morneau, Chris Parmelee, Oswaldo Arcia) who accounted for four at-bats out of thirteen.
Don't get me wrong, I'm not going crazy for Matusz yet. I know it's spring training, and on top of that this is the Minnesota Twins we're talking about. And not even the regular starting lineup for the Twins. But still, it's nice to see, right? It's better than the alternative.
Brian is, of course, in the competition for the fifth starter spot, although he has to be considered a long shot at this point. I can only hope tonight's game was a sign of things to come.