Matt Harvey Continues Struggles; Will Remain in New York Mets’ Rotation
New York Mets’ pitcher, Matt Harvey, continues to have an awful 2016 campaign. His pitches must appear like beach balls to opposing hitters, as he’s allowed a league-leading 73 hits. His record is 3-7 with an ERA of 6.08, which is good for the 5th worst among major league starters who’ve pitched enough innings to qualify. His WAR is -0.9.
However, as ugly as those numbers may be, it appears his spot in the rotation is secure.
Harvey was a key component of the Mets’ reaching the World Series last season. Yet, despite his struggles in 2016, they still remain in contention, just 1 ½ games back of the Washington Nationals. Can the Mets afford to keep him in the rotation if he continues to struggle, and if so for how long? After Tuesday night’s loss, Mets’ manager Terry Collins said:
”I’m not giving up on him.”
Harvey’s history of success certainly suggests he’s earned an extended leash. His career ERA is under 3 with an impressive career WHIP of just 1.07. Collins also added, “This guy is too big a piece to write him off, to flip him in the bullpen where you pick and choose where you might use him. This is the big leagues so we’re going to certainly go about it that way.”
If the question if he’s to remain in the rotation has been answered, the next question to ask is what’s wrong with him? His velocity is fine, still hitting mid-90’s with his fastball. One of the home runs he allowed last night was on a pitch that registered 94 on the radar gun.
Some may wonder if the 2015 workload wore down Harvey. He missed all of 2014, but then returned to pitch over 200 innings last season including the playoffs. He had never pitched over 200 innings before in his career. Was 200 innings too much too soon following a major injury? Harvey did not answer that question or any others following Tuesday’s loss — as he did not speak to the media — likely out of frustration with his performance.
Prior to making the start, Harvey did offer his perspective and disclosed that his status in the rotation had at least been discussed.
“Obviously it’s frustrating being out there right now when you’re not doing well and not helping the team. As a teammate your objective is to do everything you can to win games and help us succeed and I wasn’t doing that. So obviously they gave me an option to be skipped or what not and really try to figure things out. For me taking time off isn’t going to do anything. It’s finding it on the mound.” said Harvey.
Harvey’s next opportunity to find it on the mound will come Monday when the Mets face the Chicago White Sox.
(Matt Harvey Continues Struggles)