Matt Shoemaker

Matthew David Shoemaker (born September 27, 1986)[1] is an American professional baseball pitcher for the Yomiuri Giants of Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB). He has played in Major League Baseball (MLB) for the Los Angeles Angels, Toronto Blue Jays, and Minnesota Twins. Prior to beginning his professional career, he played college baseball at Eastern Michigan University (EMU). Shoemaker has also competed for the United States national baseball team.

Matt Shoemaker
Shoemaker with the Los Angeles Angels
Yomiuri Giants – No. 99
Born: (1986-09-27) September 27, 1986
Wyandotte, Michigan
Bats: Right
Throws: Right
Professional debut
MLB: September 20, 2013, for the Los Angeles Angels
NPB: April 9, 2022, for the Yomiuri Giants
MLB statistics
(through 2021 season)
Win–loss record46–41
Earned run average4.24
NPB statistics
(through 2022 season)
Win–loss record4-8
Earned run average4.25
Men’s baseball
Representing  United States
Pan American Games
2011 Guadalajara National team

After completing his degree at EMU, Shoemaker went unselected in the 2008 MLB Draft. He signed with the Angels as a free agent, and pitched in Minor League Baseball through 2013, when he made his MLB debut. Shoemaker was named the American League (AL) Rookie of the Month and Pitcher of the Month in August 2014, and he finished second in AL Rookie of the Year Award voting after the season.

Amateur career

Shoemaker attended Trenton High School in Trenton, Michigan, graduating in 2004.[2] He then enrolled at Eastern Michigan University (EMU), where he played college baseball for the Eastern Michigan Eagles baseball team in the Mid-American Conference (MAC) of the National Collegiate Athletic Association's (NCAA) Division I. In 2007, as a sophomore, he saved 14 games for EMU, and was named to the All-MAC's second team.[3] He tied for fifth in NCAA Division I in saves, setting the EMU single-season record in the process.[3][4] He moved back to the rotation in 2008, his junior season.[5] As a junior, Shoemaker pitched to a 6-7 win–loss record with a 4.83 earned run average in 15 games pitched. He graduated from EMU after his junior year, forgoing his final year of college eligibility.[4]

Shoemaker played for the United States national baseball team in the 2011 Baseball World Cup and 2011 Pan American Games,[6] winning the silver medal.[7]

Professional career

Minor Leagues

In the 2008 MLB Draft, Shoemaker went unselected.[4] He played collegiate summer baseball in the Great Lakes Summer Collegiate League,[5] where he was scouted and signed as a free agent by the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.[8] He received a $10,000 signing bonus.[9] Shoemaker began the 2009 season with the Cedar Rapids Kernels of the Class A Midwest League as a relief pitcher. After pitching to a 1-0 record and a 6.57 ERA in his first seven games, they demoted him to extended spring training in May.[10] He returned to Cedar Rapids in June.[11] He pitched for the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes of the Class A-Advanced California League in 2010.

Shoemaker began the 2011 season with the Salt Lake Bees of the Class AAA Pacific Coast League, and was demoted to the Arkansas Travelers of the Class AA Texas League in May.[12] He appeared in the Texas League All-Star Game in June.[13] He was named the Texas League Pitcher of the Year and the Angels' Minor League Pitcher of the Year, after leading the league with 12 wins, a 2.21 ERA, and 1.03 walks plus hits per inning pitched.[4][6][14]

The Angels invited Shoemaker to spring training with the Angels in 2012, receiving an opportunity to compete for the open fifth starter role for the Angels.[15] He pitched for Salt Lake during the 2012 and 2013 seasons.[16][17] On September 15, 2013, the Angels promoted Shoemaker to the major leagues.[18]

Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim / Los Angeles Angels

He made his MLB debut on September 20, allowing no runs and striking out five batters to record a win.[4]

Shoemaker made the Angels' 2014 Opening Day roster as a relief pitcher.[4] He earned a spot in the Angels' starting rotation during the season.[19] Shoemaker won the American League (AL) Rookie of the Month and Pitcher of the Month Awards.[20] On September 10, 2014, Shoemaker earned his 15th win – a new Angels' rookie record.[21] He suffered a strained rib cage the next week,[22] and recovered in time for the MLB postseason.[23] Shoemaker finished the season with a 16-4 record with 124 strikeouts in 136 innings pitched.[24] He took second place, behind José Abreu, in AL Rookie of the Year Award voting.[25] After the season, Shoemaker appeared in the 2014 Major League Baseball Japan All-Star Series, getting the win in a game against the Japanese All-Star team.[26]

After his solid 2014 season, Shoemaker opened 2015 as the Angels #3 starter. He experienced inconsistency throughout the 2015 campaign, leading to his demotion to Triple-A Salt Lake on August 16.[27] He was called up when rosters expanded in September. Shoemaker finished 7-10 with a 4.46 ERA in 24 starts. Shoemaker began the 2016 season in the Angels rotation but after posting an ERA of 9.15 in 5 starts, the Angels sent him down to AAA. He was called up a week later after an injury to Garrett Richards.

On September 4, 2016, against the Seattle Mariners, Shoemaker was struck in the head by a 105 mph line drive and left the game. The impact left Shoemaker with a small skull fracture and small hematoma. The injury eventually ended his 2016 season. The same night, he underwent surgery on his skull to stop the bleeding.

Shoemaker's 2017 season was cut short due to injury for the second straight season. He pitched in 14 starts with a 6-3 record. Shoemaker, with continued better health, began the 2018 season in the rotation but was soon placed on the disabled list with a forearm injury, the same injury that sidelined him the previous season. He began a throwing program at the end of April.[28] He was placed on the 60 day disabled list after undergoing forearm surgery on May 13.[29] He made his return to the rotation at the end of the season, finishing the 2018 season with a 2-2 record in 7 starts.

On November 30, 2018, the Angels non-tendered Shoemaker, making him a free agent.[30]

Toronto Blue Jays

On December 28, 2018, Shoemaker signed a one-year, $3.5 million contract with the Toronto Blue Jays.[31]

On March 29, 2019, he made his Blue Jays debut, throwing seven scoreless innings and earning the win against the Detroit Tigers.[32] On April 20, Shoemaker left a game against the Oakland Athletics in the fourth inning after injuring his left knee in a rundown play. An MRI revealed he had torn his anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) and would miss the rest of the season. Before the injury, he had a 3–0 record with a 1.57 ERA through five starts.[33]

With the 2020 Toronto Blue Jays, Shoemaker appeared in 6 games, compiling a 0-1 record with 4.71 ERA and 26 strikeouts in 28.2 innings pitched.[34]

Minnesota Twins

On February 15, 2021, Shoemaker signed a one-year, $2 million contract with the Minnesota Twins.[35] Shoemaker won his first start of the season and authored a mediocre start following it. He lost his next two starts before recording, in his words, "the worst start of [his] career," giving up 9 runs (8 earned) in 3.1 innings to the Royals. After briefly recovering and picking up his second win, he lost his next 3 decisions, the last another poor start against the Royals that propelled his ERA to 5.90. On June 4, he recorded the worst start of his career, surrendering 9 runs to the Royals again (8 of them earned) while recording just one out before being removed from the game; the appearance ballooned his season ERA from 5.90 to 7.38.[36] Relegated to the bullpen a week later, he continued to struggle in a relief role before briefly rebounding on the 21st and 24 June. After authoring another brutal appearance on June 30 - surrendering 8 earned runs in a relief appearance of just 2.2 innings[37] - he was designated for assignment by the Twins the next day with a season ERA of 8.06.[38] On July 5, Shoemaker cleared waivers and accepted an assignment to the Triple-A St. Paul Saints.[39] On August 3, Shoemaker was released by the Twins.[40]

San Francisco Giants

On August 7, 2021, Shoemaker signed a minor league contract with the San Francisco Giants.[41]

Yomiuri Giants

On February 28, 2022, Shoemaker signed with the Yomiuri Giants of Nippon Professional Baseball.[42]

Personal life

Shoemaker and his wife, Danielle, have been married since 2009 and have a son and a daughter together.[4][9]

Shoemaker has a full beard.[43] The Arkansas Travelers commemorated Shoemaker's beard with a T-shirt [44] and with a removable goatee.[45]


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  2. Nunez, Jessica (September 20, 2013). "Trenton Grad Makes MLB Debut". Patch Media. Retrieved June 19, 2016.
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  5. "California League notebook - News - The Official Site of Minor League Baseball". Retrieved February 22, 2015.
  6. "The Official Website of Eastern Michigan Athletics". Retrieved February 22, 2015.
  7. Emrich, Robert (October 26, 2011). "Van Ostrand, Canada take Pan Am gold | The Official Site of Minor League Baseball". Minor League Baseball. Retrieved January 12, 2012.
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  10. "2 more roster moves for Kernels". The Gazette. Retrieved February 22, 2015.
  11. "Kernels make 2 roster moves". The Gazette. Retrieved February 22, 2015.
  12. "Shoemaker weathers demotion". Arkansas Online. May 3, 2011. Retrieved February 22, 2015.
  13. "Nine Travelers named to all-star game". Arkansas Online. June 14, 2011. Retrieved February 22, 2015.
  14. "Trout, Miller, Green among Texas Stars - News - The Official Site of Minor League Baseball". Retrieved February 22, 2015.
  15. "Scioscia: Fifth-starter spot an open audition". Los Angeles Angels. Retrieved February 22, 2015.
  16. "Utah Local News - Salt Lake City News, Sports, Archive - The Salt Lake Tribune". Retrieved February 22, 2015.
  17. "Utah Local News - Salt Lake City News, Sports, Archive - The Salt Lake Tribune". Retrieved February 22, 2015.
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  19. Los Angeles Times (August 31, 2014). "Angels' Matt Shoemaker keeps shutting 'em down". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved February 22, 2015.
  20. "Matt Shoemaker named the A.L. Pitcher of the Month and A.L. Rookie of the Month". Major League Baseball. Retrieved February 22, 2015.
  21. Gonzalez, Alden (September 10, 2014). "With win, Halos' streak at seven, magic number at nine". Retrieved September 10, 2014.
  22. Los Angeles Times (September 16, 2014). "Angels' Matt Shoemaker has rib-cage strain, will miss next start". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved February 22, 2015.
  23. Los Angeles Times (September 30, 2014). "Angels' Matt Shoemaker, Josh Hamilton good to go for playoffs". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved February 22, 2015.
  24. Anthony Fenech, Detroit Free Press (November 10, 2014). "Trenton's Matt Shoemaker second in AL rookie of year voting". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved February 22, 2015.
  25. Los Angeles Times (November 10, 2014). "Jose Abreu wins AL rookie of year award; Angels' Matt Shoemaker second". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved February 22, 2015.
  26. Detroit Free Press News Services (November 19, 2014). "Nation & world: EMU's Matt Shoemaker gets win for MLB All-Stars in Japan". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved February 22, 2015.
  27. DiGiovanna, Mike (August 16, 2015). "Angels pitcher Matt Shoemaker sent down to the minors". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved August 17, 2015.
  28. "Angels' Matt Shoemaker: Begins throwing program". April 23, 2018. Retrieved September 29, 2020.
  29. Rice, David. "Los Angeles Angels pitcher Matt Shoemaker gets bad news". Retrieved September 29, 2020.
  30. Torres, Maria (December 2018). "Angels decline to offer contracts to pitchers Matt Shoemaker and Blake Parker". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved December 1, 2018.
  31. Chisholm, Gregor (December 28, 2018). "Blue Jays ink Matt Shoemaker to 1-year deal". Retrieved January 3, 2019.
  32. Gregor Chisholm (March 29, 2019). "Shoemaker heads shutout in sparkling debut". Retrieved April 4, 2019.
  33. Haft, Chris (April 21, 2019). "Shoemaker (torn ACL) to miss rest of season". Retrieved April 26, 2019.
  34. "Matt Shoemaker Stats, Fantasy & News".
  35. "Twins sign Matt Shoemaker to one-year contract". February 19, 2021. Retrieved June 4, 2022.
  36. "Matt Shoemaker rocked as Twins blown out by Royals". Twin Cities. June 5, 2021. Retrieved June 19, 2022.
  37. "Matt Shoemaker 2021 Pitching Game Logs". Retrieved June 19, 2022.
  38. "Twins Designate Matt Shoemaker For Assignment". MLB Trade Rumors.
  39. "Twins Outright Matt Shoemaker". MLB Trade Rumors.
  40. Franco, Anthony (August 3, 2021). "Twins Release Matt Shoemaker". MLB Trade Rumors. Retrieved June 4, 2022.
  41. Polishuk, Mike (August 7, 2021). "Giants Sign Tyler Chatwood, Matt Shoemaker To Minors Contracts". MLB Trade Rumors. Retrieved June 4, 2022.
  42. Franco, Anthony (February 15, 2022). "Matt Shoemaker Reportedly Nearing Deal With NPB's Yomiuri Giants". MLB Trade Rumors. Retrieved June 4, 2022.
  43. Hards, Bob (July 9, 2011). "Shoemaker Shuts Hounds Down". Retrieved February 22, 2015.
  44. "Giveaways Galore As Travs Host Eight Game Stand" (PDF). Arkansas Travelers. Archived from the original (PDF) on September 30, 2013.
  45. "Travs Host First Round of Texas League Playoffs" (PDF). Arkansas Travelers. Archived from the original (PDF) on July 14, 2014.
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