Mookie Betts gives high praise for Tyler Matzek's heroic NLCS performance

Championship Series - Los Angeles Dodgers v Atlanta Braves - Game Six
Championship Series - Los Angeles Dodgers v Atlanta Braves - Game Six / Michael Zarrilli/GettyImages

Just about every Atlanta Braves fan remembers where they were when Tyler Matzek struck out the side in game six of the 2021 NLCS. For the Braves country, it is a moment that will live on for generations. We've heard Braves' players describe the iconic moment, but now we have insight from one of those batters Matzek mowed down on that Atlanta night.

2023 NL MVP runner-up Mookie Betts, gave baseball fans his side of how it felt being in the batters box against Matzek via his podcast On Base with Mookie Betts. To the surprise of no one, Mookie gave Matzek a glowing review.

Mookie claims Matzek was throwing unhittable fastballs

One of the best summaries we've heard about this iconic Braves moments came from Mookie. He claims Matzek was throwing unhittable "riseballs" at around "one thousand" mph. Betts went on to say he knew it was coming, but the pitch was coming in so hot he couldn't even make contact.

As we all know, Matzek was built different during that 2021 postseason run, and now he's trying his best to make his way back to that form. Time will tell if Matzek can regain that velocity that left Dodgers star Mookie Betts in awe. When one of the best hitters in baseball says you were throwing an unhittable pitch, it has to make you feel confident you be an effective big leaguer once again.

This Spring Training, Matzek hasn't had that high-octane velocity, but early reports claim he finally looks healthy for the first time in quite some time. We still have a couple weeks for Matzek to get back acclimated with being a big league reliever capable of pitching multiple times a week. However, it's never a bad time to remember just how special that 2021 postseason Matzek moment was. We thank Mookie Betts for being a standup guy, and reminding us of that.

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