Matthew Steven Stites
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 5' 11", Weight 195 lb.
- School Jefferson College, University of Missouri
- High School Festus High School
- Debut June 19, 2014
- Final Game October 2, 2015
- Born May 28, 1990 in Chesterfield, MO USA
Pitcher Matt Stites made his major league debut in 2014.
He was All-State in high school. He went 7-3 as a junior college freshman then improved to 9-2, 1.67 as a sophomore. He was drafted twice, first by the Chicago Cubs in 33rd round of the 2010 amateur draft out of junior college, then again by the San Diego Padres out of the University of Missouri in the 17th round in 2011 (3-6, 3.72 at Missouri in 2011). The Padres signing scout was Jeff Stewart. He began his pro career that same year, going 4-0 with five saves and a 1.82 ERA for the AZL Padres (2 G) and Eugene Emeralds (24 G)]. Used strictly as a reliever, he pitched 34 2/3 innings in 26 outings, allowing only 14 hits (for a .119 opponent average) and 8 walks while striking out 39. He then had an even better sophomore season with the Fort Wayne TinCaps of the Midwest League in 2012, posting a sparkling 0.74 ERA in 42 games, during which he went 2-0 with 13 saves. He remained well-nigh unhittable, allowing only 25 base hits in 48 2/3 innings, with a K/W ratio of 60/3. He set a team record for lowest ERA for a pitcher with 45+ IP.
After that initial success, the Padres decided to make Matt skip a step on the ladder in 2013, sending him straight to the AA Texas League and the San Antonio Missions, by-passing High Class-A. In 46 games, he was 2-2, 2.08 with 14 saves, allowing 37 hits in 52 innings, striking out 51 and walking only 8. Three years of outstanding pitching made him a prospect, and on July 31st, the Arizona Diamondbacks asked for him, along with veteran reliever Joe Thatcher, to complete a deal in which they sent starter Ian Kennedy to San Diego.
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