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Rochester Royals pitcher Matt Meyer has setback as new season begins

May 21—ROCHESTER — Matt Meyer still has a passion to play baseball, but he's not sure how much longer his body will hold up.

Meyer is a 39-year-old Rochester native who is a former minor-league pitcher. The left-hander has played amateur baseball for the Rochester Royals for a number of years and was a huge cog in the team's drive to a Class B state championship in 2022.

But Meyer missed most of the 2023 season with the Royals due to a strained left forearm. The Royals opened their 2024 season this past weekend and Meyer is hoping to play as much as he can, but he's already had an early-season setback.

He recently threw three innings in a 35-and-over league in Lakeville and several days later his elbow was still very sore.

"I don't know how much I'll be able to throw," Meyer said.

"I'm almost 40 years old and I've played for a long time," he added. "Maybe my body's telling me to be done and figure out a new hobby. But I'm going to keep working at it to see if I can make it feel better."

Meyer is a Mayo High School graduate who played college baseball at Boston College. He then spent nine seasons playing professional ball, mostly as a relief pitcher. He climbed as high as Triple-A, just one step below the major leagues.

Despite having pitched at a high level, Meyer still has a great passion for the game and is willing to do whatever it takes to still compete at the amateur level.

"Wherever they need me, I'm not too proud to pitch wherever they need help," Meyer said. "A big part of being a good teammate and being a good team guy is just getting called on and doing what you're being asked to do."

That's why his setback this spring is frustrating, especially with all the rehabbing and training Meyer did during the offseason.

"We're hoping to have him pitch as much as possible, but it's up to him," said Drew Block, a Royals player and business manager.

Meyer uses a lot of ice and Ibuprofen to deal with the swelling and pain in his elbow. He has also had some tingling in his fingers, which doctors told him can be common.

"It's frustrating to say the least, because I've been in the gym, staying in shape and trying to keep up with these young pups that are 20 to 24 years old," he said. "But they say Father Time is undefeated for a reason."

He also has very fond memories of the Royals championship season, which was a first at any level for Meyer. And he would like nothing more than to recapture that glory at least one more time.

"It's frustrating because I can still throw hard and can compete against anybody, but it's just the body bouncing back and being well enough to do it consistently," he said.

Guy N. Limbeck is a sports writer for the Post Bulletin. His Local Notebook appears each Tuesday. He can be reached at glimbeck@postbulletin.com .