Both the Mets and Matt Harvey insist there’s nothing wrong with the pitcher’s surgically-repaired elbow, but, he’s Harvey, so can we really buy into that?
Whatever is ailing Harvey – outside of unflattering and sarcastic headlines – it usually surfaces in the middle innings.
“He’s hit a wall,” Collins told reporters about Harvey’s problems. “All of a sudden in the middle of the game he’s not making pitches that he made early in the game — he has struggled out of the stretch. He made some changes, so I know he feels good about it so I expect him to get it going.”
Excluding injuries – Collins insists Harvey “is too smart,” to pitch with an injury – the prevailing theory is a mechanical flaw with the pitcher’s back leg. That’s pitching coach Dan Warthen‘s conclusion.
“I’m not a pitching coach,” Collins said. “I believe in my pitching coach. He’s very, very good, and if that’s what he’s determined and they’ve got it fixed then Matt Harvey will be back. The way we tried to get all those young guys ready for the season, he might have not done enough extra work in the bullpen.”
Actually, Collins would be more thruthful if he said Mets pitchers didn’t get enough work in spring training games. The traditional number is close to 30 exhibition innings, but Harvey threw 12.
“I still have all the confidence in the world he’s going to get it going and at the end of the year he’s going to be right where he always is, and that’s pitching great,” Collins said.
Collins better be right because there’s a whole lot riding on Harvey pitching to expectations.
ON DECK: April 22, Mets Lineup At Atlanta