First Start Since High School: Matt Cassel is No Stranger to Pressure
Much was made of Matt Cassel making his first NFL start for the New England Patriots last weekend.
Was he ready? Could he handle the pressure? Had he been tested before?
All anyone needed to do was look at Matt’s experience as a Little Leaguer. Not only did his Little League team from Northridge, Calif., reach the final game of the 1994 Little League Baseball World Series, but Matt was one of the key players, batting .429 and playing every inning at first base with just two errors in five games.
Oh, and he also survived a massive earthquake that year, helping to free his father from debris that had fallen on him in their home in the middle of the night.
So it was no surprise that Matt, actually making his first start at QB since high school, rose to the occasion to lead the Patriots to a 19-10 victory over the New York Jets.
Here are the results of the Northridge team’s games, and how Matt Cassel performed in them, in the 1994 Little League Baseball World Series:
Game 1 (Northridge lost to Brooklyn Center, Minn., 4-2): Played first base for entire game, had one error. Batted twice; struck out and grounded out.
Game 2 (Northridge defeated Middleboro, Mass., 6-4): Played first base for entire game with no errors. Batted three times; had a three-run home run, a single, and flew out.
Game 3 (Northridge defeated Springfield, Va., 2-0): Played first base for entire game, had one error. Batted three times with a ground out, a fielder’s choice, and a single.
Note: Games 1, 2, and 3 were “Pool Play” games.
Game 4 (U.S. Semifinal, Northridge defeated Springfield, Va., 3-0): Played first base for entire game with no errors. Batted three times with two singles and reached on an error.
Game 5 (World Championship, Northridge lost vs. Maracaibo, Venezuela, 4-3): Played first base for entire game with no errors. Batted three times with a single and two ground-outs.
Little League Baseball World Series Cumulative Stats for Matt Cassel -
Games played: 5
Innings played (all at first base defensively): 30
Hits: 6 (five singles, one home run, .429 batting average)
Runs batted in: 3