Steven Matz arrived at Citi Field early to take in all of Friday’s home opener. The lefthander didn’t want to miss anything. As the clubhouse opened, Matt Harvey was standing at his cubicle, Curtis Granderson was flashing his usual smile and Matz just sat and looked around.
Matz had to join the Mets to finally see them in person for the home opener. The Ward Melville High School graduate never made it Shea Stadium or Citi Field to watch an opener. Matz didn’t debut with the Mets until June 28 of last season. He went 4-0. He said he has not been told when he will make his first start this season.
Someday he may pitch the home opener. That would be yet another first. He seemed as excited as a fan who scored a ticket to Opening Day. “My parents were always working,’’ Matz said Friday morning. “Dad was always working, mom was always working. Days they weren’t working I was probably out there playing.”
Matz, 24, said he never skipped school to watch the opener on television and social media wasn’t really in full swing until much later. “Back when I was growing up we didn’t have smart phones or anything,’’ he said. “You just waited till you got home and watched the highlights.’’
Now, Matz will see the highlights and everything else in person. Matz still has rookie awe. “This is awesome,’’ he said. “I’m really excited about the team. We have a great bunch of guys. I’m really blessed to be here.’’