Wiley Keeps Zero ERA at Billings

Wiley Keeps Zero ERA at Billings

Matt "Mo" Wiley waited until the 28th round before Cincinnati selected him in this year's draft out of the University of Houston. A broken jaw had sidelined him during his senior season after he took over as the Cougar closer. In his brief professional career thus far he has been dominant the Pioneer League coming out of the Billings bullpen.

Billings took a four run lead and held on for a 4-2 win at Missoula. The Mustang offense did their damage early. Jesse Winker had two hits and got the scoring started with a two-run home run in the first inning. Wagner Gomez added the other two runs on a homer in the next frame.

On the mound Jonathan Moscot got the start and threw two scoreless innings allowing only one hit while facing only seven hitters. Jose Amezcua struck out six in 4+ innings while allowing two runs on three hits, which was good enough for the win. Alejandro Chacin and Sean Lucas each tossed a scoreless inning of relief. Matt Wiley retired the only two batters he faced to end the game for the save.

Wiley's career is in its infancy. There are lots of things missing from his resume as a professional pitcher. He has not garnered attention that benefits early draft selections. He has not appeared in more than ten games. He has not pitched above the rookie league level. He is working to change all that because he has also not allowed an earned run.

In ten appearances with the Mustang Wiley is 1-0 with a zero ERA and six saves. The only save he's blown came from an unearned run. He's come out of nowhere to nail down the Billings closer job after waiting for the Reds to select him in the 28th round of this year's draft. So far everything looks good for the right-hander out of the University of Houston. He's allowed only three hits in 8+ innings in the hitter-friendly Pioneer league with a K/BB ratio of 11/4.

Mo Wiley brings an intimidating presence to the mound with a 6'4/225# build. He finished his senior season with the Cougars and will turn 23 years old this offseason. Not dismayed by the late selection he commented: "It's a tremendous opportunity and I am very blessed to have been selected. Professional baseball has been a life-long dream and I consider myself to be a lucky one. I'm excited and anxious to pursue the next step and get back to work-still wearing Cougar red."

Wiley stayed at home when he decided to pitch collegiately after graduating from Mayde Creek H.S. in Houston where he also lettered in basketball. Early on he was used as a starter. When looking at his stats on the diamond, it can be seen why he lasted so long in the draft. After nailing down the closer role he suffered a broken jaw on a comebacker that sidelined his senior season in early May. That year he had a 4.67 ERA but did strike out 39 batters in 35 innings. Now he's doing much better against wooden bats in the Pioneer League than he did pitching in Conference USA.

Houston was very happy to receive Wiley's services. His fastball was topping over 90 mph while still in high school. Now after a weight loss from his college injury he's putting it to good use professionally. He has walked four batters in fewer than nine innings pitched, but it's rare to find any young pitcher that doesn't need to work on command. With so many players entering MLB organizations from the draft each year it's hard to determine the future of one without the investment of a high pick. As long as Wiley keeps a miniscule ERA the only move he will make will be upward in the Cincinnati organization.

Other News from the Farm:

Louisville scored the go-ahead run in the eighth in a 3-2 win at Gwinnett, beating former N.L. all-star Jair Jurrjens. Neftali Soto continued swinging a hot bat with two hits including a solo home run in the second inning to start the Bats' scoring. Chad Reineke had a strong outing by allowing two runs (one earned) on six hits in six innings. Jordan Smith threw a scoreless inning and the timing of his appearance got the win. Nick Masset retired the side in order in the eighth for a hold. J.J. Hoover matched him in the ninth for the save.

Pensacola took an early lead with a two-run first inning and failed to score any more in a 4-2 home loss against Chattanooga. Lookout pitchers limited the Wahoos to only five hits. Kyle Lotzkar had a quality start without a decision when he allowed two runs on four hits in six innings while striking out five. Josh Ravin relieved him and allowed a run in 1+ innings for the loss.

Billy Hamilton Theft Watch:

Hamilton started the game off right by drawing a walk to lead off the first and then converting it into another "virtual triple" by swiping second and third during the next at-bat. He led off the sixth with a single and was caught attempting to steal second. He's now ten behind the minor league record with 135 SB out of 164 attempts in 111 games.

Bakersfield took a four run lead and held on for a 4-2 win at Missoula. The Mustang offense did their damage early. Jesse Winker had two hits and got the scoring started with a two-run home run in the first inning. Wagner Gomez added the other two runs on a homer in the next frame.

On the mound Jonathan Moscot got the start and threw two scoreless innings allowing only one hit while facing only seven hitters. Jose Amezcua struck out six in 4+ innings while allowing two runs on three hits, which was good enough for the win. Alejandro Chacin and Sean Lucas each tossed a scoreless inning of relief. Matt Wiley retired the only two batters he faced to end the game for the save.

Wiley's career is in its infancy. There are lots of things missing from his resume as a professional pitcher. He has not garnered attention that benefits early draft selections. He has not appeared in more than ten games. He has not pitched above the rookie league level. He is working to change all that because he has also not allowed an earned run.

In ten appearances with the Mustang Wiley is 1-0 with a zero ERA and six saves. The only save he's blown came from an unearned run. He's come out of nowhere to nail down the Billings closer job after waiting for the Reds to select him in the 28th round of this year's draft. So far everything looks good for the right-hander out of the University of Houston. He's allowed only three hits in 8+ innings in the hitter-friendly Pioneer league with a K/BB ratio of 11/4.

Mo Wiley brings an intimidating presence to the mound with a 6'4/225# build. He finished his senior season with the Cougars and will turn 23 years old this offseason. Not dismayed by the late selection he commented: "It's a tremendous opportunity and I am very blessed to have been selected. Professional baseball has been a life-long dream and I consider myself to be a lucky one. I'm excited and anxious to pursue the next step and get back to work-still wearing Cougar red."

Wiley stayed at home when he decided to pitch collegiately after graduating from Mayde Creek H.S. in Houston where he also lettered in basketball. Early on he was used as a starter. When looking at his stats on the diamond, it can be seen why he lasted so long in the draft. After nailing down the closer role he suffered a broken jaw on a comebacker that sidelined his senior season in early May. That year he had a 4.67 ERA but did strike out 39 batters in 35 innings. Now he's doing much better against wooden bats in the Pioneer League than he did pitching in Conference USA.

Houston was very happy to receive Wiley's services. His fastball was topping over 90 mph while still in high school while pitching for a team coming off a poor season. Now after a weight loss from his injury he's putting it to good use professionally. He has walked four batters in fewer than nine innings pitched, but it's rare to find any young pitcher that doesn't need to work on command. With so many players entering MLB organizations from the draft each year it's hard to determine the future of one without the investment of a high pick. If Wiley keeps a miniscule ERA the only place he will go will be upward in the Cincinnati organization.

Other News from the Farm:

Louisville scored the go-ahead run in the eighth in a 3-2 win at Gwinnett, beating former N.L. all-star Jair Jurrjens. Neftali Soto continued swinging a hot bat with two hits including a solo home run in the second inning to start the Bats' scoring. Chad Reineke had a strong outing by allowing two runs (one earned) on six hits in six innings. Jordan Smith threw a scoreless inning and the timing of his appearance got the win. Nick Masset retired the side in order in the eighth for a hold. J.J. Hoover matched him in the ninth for the save.

Pensacola took an early lead with a two-run first inning and failed to score any more in a 4-2 home loss against Chattanooga. Lookout pitchers limited the Wahoos to only five hits. Kyle Lotzkar had a quality start without a decision when he allowed two runs on four hits in six innings while striking out five. Josh Ravin relieved him and allowed a run in 1+ innings for the loss.

Billy Hamilton Theft Watch:

Hamilton started the game off right by drawing a walk to lead off the first and then converting it into another "virtual triple" by swiping second and third during the next at-bat. He led off the sixth with a single and was caught attempting to steal second. He's now ten behind the minor league record with 135 SB out of 164 attempts in 111 games.

Bakersfield allowed six in the sixth and another five the next inning in an 11-3 loss at High Desert. Kurtis Muller had two extra base hits for the Blaze. Steve Selksy added two more including a triple. Chris Berset hit a solo homer in the fourth. Jamie Walczak got the start and the loss. He allowed four runs on seven hits in 5+ innings while striking out five.

For the second day in a row Dayton was rained out. Both games at Lansing have been cancelled.

The AZL Reds were shut out 3-0 by the visiting AZL Padres. Brayan Arias had a couple of hits including a triple to raise his average to .314. Pedro Diaz allowed only one run on five hits in four innings, but that was enough to charge him with the loss.

The DSL Reds scored the game-winner in the bottom of the ninth in a 3-2 home win over the DSL Diamondbacks. Miguel Mendez had three hits and scored a run to raise his average over .300. Aristides Aquino had two singles. Eliezer Beard allowed one run in 3+ innings for no decision. Josue Castellano entered in the eighth and struck out three before finishing the game without allowing a run for the win.

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