Born: Glendale, Arizona
Age: 21 (7/14/98)
Height/Weight: 6’4”/185 lbs.
School: University of Arizona (Tucson, Arizona)
Matthew Dyer attended Mountain Ridge High School in Glendale, Arizona, lettering twice in baseball. He did not become a regular on the varsity team until 2015, his junior year. In his first year on it, he appeared in 29 games and hit .302/.357/.428 with 5 walks and 7 strikeouts. In his senior year, he appeared in 31 games and hit .440/.509/.571.
After graduating, he attended the University of Oregon. He appeared in 43 games in his freshman year for the Ducks, hitting .268/.355/.362. He transferred out of Oregon when the season ended, citing that he missed home and the fact that the Oregon baseball program simply “wasn’t my fit.” He initially transferred to Central Arizona College, a junior college in Coolidge, Arizona, but after breaking a bone in his left hand during fall practices and having problems transferring some of his credits, decided against it. Instead of heading to Central Arizona College, he transferred to the University of Arizona. As per NCAA transfer rules, he was deemed ineligible to play for the Wildcats for the 2018 season because he transferred to the school in January 2018. He immediately hit the ground running when he was finally able to suit up for them for the 2019 season, hitting .393/.480/.571 in 42 games, slugging 4 homers, stealing 5 bases in 8 attempts, walking 22 times, and striking out 28 times. While he missed the last month of the season because of a broken hand, his batting average remained second-best on the team, and ended up being the third-best in the Pac-12. He began the 2020 season slow, hitting .204/.333/.449 in 13 games with 3 home runs, 1 stolen base, 9 walks, and 11 strikeouts. Before he could get a chance to get in better sync, COVID-19 caused the NCAA to prematurely end the college season.
Most notable about Dyer is the fact that he has experience playing catcher, first base, second base, third base, left field, and right field. While he didn’t play shortstop or center field, coach Jay Johnson was open to trying him there at points throughout the 2020 season, believing Dyer to be athletic and gifted enough to handle both positions in limited quantities. While he can play almost anywhere on the diamond, he feels most at home behind the plate. His arm, which has been clocked as high as 90 MPH, is more than good enough, but some scouts and evaluators doubt his endurance and ability to play behind the dish for an entire season. Because he has spent so much time playing other positions throughout his collegiate career, his framing and receiving abilities lag behind where they would be if he caught full-time.
At the plate, the tall, lanky Dyer stands tall and open at the plate, holding his bat low and swinging with a toe tap mechanism. His swing has plane and length, showing enough power to profile well for most of the positions that he plays in a replacement or utility role- especially since adding about ten pounds of muscle since the 2019 season and playing the 2020 season closer to 200 pounds. He is athletic and deceptively speedy for someone his size and weight, often beating out all of his Wildcats teammates in sprints.
Dyer is a leader on the field and is extremely coachable and open to criticism and being used in whatever role the team needs at the time.