Mets prized rookie Matz expected to throw off mound next week

New York Mets rookie left-hander Steven Matz is expected to throw off a mound next week.

Matz has been sidelined since suffering a partially torn lat muscle early last month. He took the first step to a return by long-tossing Friday in Port St. Lucie, Fla.

The 24-year-old Matz won each of his first two major league starts in impressive fashion, limiting the Cincinnati Reds to two runs over five hits in his debut on June 28.

He followed that up with a dominant performance against the Los Angeles Dodgers on July 5, tossing six scoreless innings while striking out eight.