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Sunday, May 8, 2022

Pedro Matilla impressed scouts in high school; Saw five pro seasons, made high-A

Mets scout Carlos Pascual sized up Miami-area players to The Miami News in May 1987, including area catchers. Top among them: Southridge High's Pedro Matilla.

Pascual liked Matilla's hitting and makeup, he told The News.

"Matilla is in a great position to be a professional ball player," Pascual told The News then. "He's got the body and the size and the really good arm. And best of all he's got great power."

Matilla turned pro that next month. He eventually saw five seasons. He topped out at high-A.

Matilla's career began that year, taken by the Red Sox in the 12th round of the draft out of Miami's Southridge.

Matilla started with the Red Sox at short-season Elmira. He got into 25 games there in 1987 and 39 back there in 1988. He hit .152 and .154.

He played 1989 between Elmira, the rookie Gulf Coast League and single-A Winter Haven. He hit .268 over 77 games on the year.

That July, Red Sox GM Lou Gorman expressed confidence in Mantilla to The Hartford Courant.

Mantilla "has a great arm," Gorman told The Courant. "Johnny Pesky tells me he has the strongest arm he's ever seen in a young catching prospect."

Mantilla played all of 1990 at Winter Haven at high-A. He hit .193 over 118 games. He then returned to Winter Haven for 1991. He saw 29 games and hit .130 to end his career.

1990 Minor League Tally 
Players/Coaches Featured:3,910
Made the Majors:1,301-33.3%
Never Made Majors:2,609-66.7%-X
5+ Seasons in the Majors:528
10+ Seasons in the Minors:326

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