Born on August 12, 1974 in McCandless, Pennsylvania, Matt Clement (Matthew Paul Clement) played for the San Diego Padres, Florida Marlins, Chicago Cubs and Boston Red Sox over the course of his 9 year career. Clement broke into the bigs on September 6, 1998 with the San Diego Padres, and put up a 4.48 ERA in 180.2 innings pitched in 1999, his rookie year.
Most people believe that Matt Clement's best season was 2002, when he posted a 3.60 ERA, won 12 games and struck out 215 batters.
Boston Red Sox
Clement is, perhaps unfairly, unliked by Boston fans. He was brought in before the 2005 season and unfortunately was given the task of replacing one of the greatest in the game, Pedro Martinez. With a hot start he made the All-Star team in his first year in Boston, but things quickly went downhill. Everything, from a line drive to the head off the bat of Carl Crawford to a horrid performance in the ALDS against the Chicago White Sox, went wrong after his first dozen starts. He was never given much of a chance as a Cub either when the fans focussed more on his pitch counts and record (35-36) instead of his solid ERA's and quality starts. The biggest issue has been how people perceive Clement. They see his stuff and expect greatness. But if you take a step back and lower your expectations, it's easy to like a guy who gives his team a quality start more often than not and keeps his team in a lot of games.
The man is no Hall of Famer, but he is a solid option and with the paychecks that mediocre pitchers are getting these days, he's a bargain for a team with plenty of spend like the Red Sox
Clement has the stuff, but has never really been able to put it together. Some say his makeup is questionable and call his confidence into question. His pitches have a lot of movement. His fastball sits around 90-93 and when he's on, he has a great slider. His biggest fault is his control. He's often out of the game by the 6th inning because he throws a lot of pitches to every batter with a lot of walks and a lot of strike outs. He is known as a first half pitcher. Over the last 3 years he has had a 3.71 ERA before the All-Star break compared to a 4.77 ERA after it.
Most Known For
In this what have you done for me lately sports world, Clements All-Star appearance or his 215 strikeout year have been forgotten and he is best known for imploding in the 2005 playoffs.
- Selected by San Diego Padres in the 3rd round of the free-agent draft (June 3, 1993 - signed August 24, 1993).
- Traded by San Diego Padres with Eric Owens and Omar Ortiz to Florida Marlins in exchange for Cesar Crespo and Mark Kotsay (March 28, 2001).
- Traded by Florida Marlins with Antonio Alfonseca to Chicago Cubs in exchange for Julian Tavarez, Jose Cueto, Ryan Jorgensen and Dontrelle Willis (March 27, 2002).
- Granted free agency (October 28, 2004).
- Signed by Boston Red Sox (December 22, 2004).
- Won the pitching triple crown when he lead the league in BB, HBP, and WP with the San Diego Padres in 2000
- Made the AL All-Star team in 2005