The Atlanta Braves will retain one of the key members of their bullpen, signing free agent Tyler Matzek to a two-year contract Friday.
The deal is for $3.1 million over the two years and includes a $5.5 million club option for the 2025 season.
The Braves will put their faith in Matzek returning to form, as the 32-year-old left-hander underwent Tommy John surgery in October and will likely miss most, if not all, of the 2023 season.
Matzek struggled some with injuries and inconsistency in 2022, though he still finished with a 4-2 record and a 3.50 ERA in 43 2/3 innings over 42 games.
Matzek joined the Braves in 2020 after a four-year stretch out of the major leagues. That followed control issues — the “yips” — that derailed a two-year tenure as a starter with the Colorado Rockies in 2014-15.
In three years with the Braves, Matzek is 8-9 with a 2.92 ERA and 156 strikeouts over 132 games. He was a pivotal part of Atlanta’s World Series run in 2021, striking out 24 batters in 15 2/3 postseason innings.
During the Braves’ NL title-clinching win over the Los Angeles Dodgers at Truist Park, Matzek came into the game and got Atlanta out of a two-on, no-out jam by striking out the side, including Albert Pujols and Mookie Betts.