Saturday, May 29, 2010
Oriole #879-Frank Mata
Frank made his MLB debut during Wednesday night's game against the A's. He was called up prior to Tuesday's game to replace either Alfredo Simon or Koji Uehara in the bullpen. He already appears to be an upgrade over Koji since he was able to pitch on a very hot night without immediately fatiguing or becoming injured. Good for you Frank! All told, he pitched 1.1 innings giving up one hit and one walk. Kakes saved him a few earned runs by making a great diving catch to end the 7th inning after Frank had been replaced by Matt "Fat" Albers.
I was lucky enough to get Frank's autograph in Spring Training so I am able to add him to the O's all-time player list and list of players whose autograph that I have. The Orioles signed Frank as a Minor League free agent this past offseason after he spent the first 6 years of his professional career in the Minor League ranks in the Twins' farm system, never reaching the AAA level over that time. This season, Frank has been the AAA Tides closer and had 8 saves with a 1.86 ERA so he certainly earned his promotion.