The minor league journeyman, Chris Mazza, waited seven and a half long seasons before the New York Mets gave him the first call-up of his career. At 29-years old, it was a very emotional moment for the minor league veteran.
Twenty-nine-year-old rookie Chris Mazza says he was "holding back tears" when he learned of his call-up to the Mets: pic.twitter.com/13eOUqZBKK
— Anthony DiComo (@AnthonyDiComo) June 26, 2019
The Mets drafted Mazza from the Boston Red Sox during the Rule 5 draft before the 2019 season. It took until June 26 for the Mets to finally bring him up after Walker Lockett went to Syracuse. His first major league outing came on June 29 when he pitched in relief for Steven Matz, who left after a rain delay.
Mazza pitched four stellar innings and only allowed one run to the Atlanta Braves. It was his only outing before the Mets optioned him back to Syracuse on July 2 when the Mets activated a handful of pitchers off the Injured List. He came back ten days later after the Mets DFA’d Wilmer Font.
The Mets' loss was unfortunate, but for 29-year-old rookie Chris Mazza, today was a dream come true.
He reacts: pic.twitter.com/idoPWDCoVu
— Anthony DiComo (@AnthonyDiComo) June 30, 2019
This second go-around came with very minimal success. He allowed runs in all three of his outings. The last one came in a painful 16 inning loss against the San Francisco Giants. Mazza threw 34 pitches the previous night, and the Mets were forced into using Mazza since he was the last reliever left. He got through the 15th with 1-2-3 but had nothing left in the tank to secure the win in the 16th.
Once again, he went back to Triple-A the following day. Mazza returned to allow five runs in his two August outings, which concluded with another option to Syracuse. When the rosters expanded in September, he made one final return. Mazza had three scoreless outings and picked up his first career win in the last game of the season.
Shipping Up to Boston
The Red Sox claimed Mazza off waivers from the Mets on December 20 to end his Mets career. He will have the chance to crack the Red Sox bullpen in Spring Training.
Pitching Repertoire: D, His fastball had a solid sink but sat in the low 90s. His slider and change-up were more set up pitches than effective ones. His cutter helped hold lefties to a lower batting average than right-handers.
Control: B+, 2.4 BB/9, Mazza is known for his control
Composure: F, Tough guy to rely on in high leverage situations. Not enough swing and miss ability to get out of the key situations.
Overall: D, There were no high expectations with Mazza, but it was easy to see why he has been a fringe major league pitcher.