Note: This page is for 2000s infielder Matthew Brown; for others with the same name, click here.
Matthew Benjamin Brown
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 6' 0", Weight 200 lb.
- High School Coeur d'Alene High School
- Debut May 10, 2007
- Final Game September 28, 2008
- Born August 8, 1982 in Bellevue, WA USA
"'What's a pone tony?' he [Matt Brown] asked me a few minutes into the film [Pootie Tang]. 'He's speaking gibberish,' I replied. 'No, he's not... it's Hindu or something.' 'It's definitely gibberish. That's the joke.' 'No... it's not. I swear I've heard people say pone tony. And I know I've heard sa da tey before. I'm serious. This is gonna drive me nuts.' 'It sounds familiar because he's switching the first letters of the words. You're thinking of a tone pony.' 'No... I'm not,' he whispered. 'I want to know what he's saying.' Perhaps all the talk in the parking lot about college had gotten Brown in the mood to learn something. And since he'd just pissed on my leg, I decided to have some fun with him..." - Matt McCarthy, from his memoir Odd Man Out
Matt Brown made his major league debut in 2007. He saw action in two seasons with the Los Angeles Angels.
Brown was picked by the then Anaheim Angels in the 10th round of the 2001 amateur draft. He debuted with the AZL Angels and hit .163/.275/.248 while playing second base primarily. In 2002, Matthew batted .296/.406/.361 in 32 games for the Provo Angels and .361/.443/.495 for the AZL Angels. Baseball America rated him the #7 prospect in the Arizona League, right ahead of Travis Ishikawa. Brown struggled in 2003 with the Cedar Rapids Kernels (.207/.306/.311 in 49 games) but hit .292/.412/.515 in 65 games for Provo, scoring 58 runs and driving in 52. He led Pioneer League third basemen in assists (131) and double plays (13). In 2004, the Washingtonian showed good power despite struggling on the contact front, slugging 23 home runs and bringing in 82 runners. He hit .233/.303/.455 with 126 strikeouts in 437 at bats at age 21. Baseball America rated him the best defensive third baseman in the Midwest League.
Brown batted .262/.329/.432 for the 2005 Rancho Cucamonga Quakes with 39 doubles, 12 home runs and 125 strikeouts. He had the best fielding percentage (.948) of any California League third baseman. Matthew hit .293/.362/.495 in 2006 for the Arkansas Travelers as his offensive performance continued to improve. He hit 41 doubles, 19 home runs and drove in 79 runs while scoring 77, cutting his strikeouts to 108 in 515 at bats. He led the Angels farm system in doubles and was third in the Texas League. He had the most putouts of TL third basemen (96) but also the most errors (27). He then hit .295/~.329/.385 for the Scottsdale Scorpions in the Arizona Fall League, splitting third base duties with Ryan Braun.
Brown began 2007 with the Salt Lake Bees and batted .300/.374/.500 in 30 games. He was called up to the majors to replace Brandon Wood; the idea was that Wood, a top prospect, needed to play every day, whereas Brown would serve better in a bench role. He debuted on May 10 as a defensive substitute for Orlando Cabrera in the top of the 8th inning. In the bottom of the 8th against Aaron Fultz, he flew out to left fielder David Dellucci. In 15 big league games between 2007 and 2008, Brown slashed .042/.148/.083 (1-for-24) with his lone big league hit a 2-run double against the Oakland A's on May 1, 2008.
Brown played for the USA in the 2008 Olympics and had their second-best OPS (trailing Jason Donald), hitting .281/.390/.563 while rotating between third base, first base and designated hitter. He drove in 10 runs in 9 games. He had 3 RBI in their loss to the South Korean national team, which took home Gold. His solo homer off Shairon Martis got the scoring going in a victory over the Dutch national team. Brown hit a 3-run homer off of Tsuyoshi Wada and later scored another run in the 8-4 Bronze Medal game win against Japan. In the opening round, Brown's 6 RBI tied Nate Schierholtz, Giorvis Duvergel, Atsunori Inaba, Alexei Bell and Takahiro Arai for 4th, trailing Alfredo Despaigne, Dae-ho Lee and Michel Enriquez.
While trying to catch on with the Angels in spring training 2009, a former teammate's memoir painted Brown as a bit of a rube. Odd Man Out: A Year On The Mound With A Minor League Misfit, penned by former Provo Angels teammate (and pitcher) Matt McCarthy, featured tales in which Brown was punched in the groin by the son of former CNN host Larry King at a game as well as the remembrance of a bus trip where McCarthy claimed Brown believed the gibberish spoken by characters in the 2001 film Pootie Tang was actually "Hindu". Brown denied all incidents he was written to be involved in. He would hang around professional baseball through 2012, never reaching the bigs again.