Daisuke Matsuzaka got his first big-league save on Thursday, pitching a perfect ninth inning against the Cardinals.
Terry Collins later said, for now, Kyle Farnsworth is still his primary closer.
“Farnsworth is still the guy, but we might need somebody else at the end of the game,” he said. “So, I thought today was a good time to try Matsuzaka. Don’t be shocked if something should happen where he ends up pitching the ninth inning.”
Matsuzaka, Farnsworth, Jose Valverde and Carlos Torres all have at least one save this season.
Matthew Cerrone, Lead Writer
Matsuzaka is tough minded, experienced, he loves baseball, he loves pitching, he loves the spotlight and he loves to be in pressurized moments. However, he also takes forever to warm up and he doesn’t always keep the ball in the strikezone. So, while he may have the mental make-up to pitch late in games, I’m concerned about his physical ability to keep succeeding in this role. I know bullpen coach Ricky Bones is working him on cutting down his 2-3 inning warm-up time, so that’s a start. He’s up to the challenge, I’m told. He’d prefer to be a starter, obviously, but more than anything he wants to be involved and play an important role in in the team’s success, this is the most important thing to him. So far so good…
Matsuzaka is getting used to his new role >> Read more in the Star-Ledger.
He doesn’t want to be the guy to get saves, he wants to be the guy the team turns to in pressure situations late in games >> Read more in the New York Post.