The Mets suspended Matt Harvey for three days Sunday and sent him home before he could address the media. When Harvey shows up at Citi Field this afternoon making today’s question an obvious one: What will he say? What is his version of what happened?
HARVEY: Is he walking away from Mets? (AP)
Of course, there will be the obvious follow-up questions. What does he hope to gain by filing a grievance with the Players Association? Does he believe his relationship with the Mets has been irreparably damaged? Why does controversy always swirl around him? Whom did he try to reach with the Mets? Does he even want to be a Met? What was his golf score Saturday, and was he in a group with Yoenis Cespedes?
I have no idea of what he will say, but considering his track record of controversy since 2013, it is hard to give him benefit of the doubt. Do you think he deserves it?
I wrote as early as 2013 he was becoming a headache, and as soon as the next summer he was wearing out his welcome and the Mets should explore trading him because I didn’t think he would re-sign when he becomes a free agent after the 2018 season and nothing has happened to make me change my mind.
Harvey has always been a me-first diva and has a lot of explaining to do to make me think otherwise. For those who don’t agree with me, well, that’s fine. But, consider this. That the fans, media, manager and general manager, have pretty much let Harvey call his own shots without consequence has lead him to think he can do whatever he wants, whenever he wants.
Matt Harvey had to be shocked this morning when he learned the Mets rules and the actually apply to him. GM Sandy Alderson announced Harvey will be suspended for three days without pay for violation of team rules and will not make today’s start against Miami.
Harvey, who hasn’t pitched well in his last two starts, was sent home. It is presumed Harvey will start during the San Francisco series. Alderson is scheduled to address the media this morning.
Left-hander Adam Wilk will start in place of Harvey (2-2, 5.14 ERA).
The Mets scored at least five runs in their ninth straight game. Eventually, that roll will stop, and when it does they will have to rely on their starting pitching, which is in dire straits these days.
HARVEY: Needs to step up. (AP)
Jacob deGrom is their most reliable starter, but the Mets aren’t getting seven innings a start from him. Noah Syndergaard and Steven Matz remain on the disabled list with no expected return date. Robert Gsellman and Rafael Montero aren’t setting any innings records, either, and the latter will get another start because the Mets can’t find any better.
That leaves us to today’s question: What can they expect from Matt Harvey?
Harvey won his first two starts, giving up just four runs while working a total of 12.1 innings. Starts three and four were no-decisions, but he gave up five runs. However, his last two games were losses in which he gave up a combined 12 runs in 9.2 innings. He gave up two homers in those games but had only three strikeouts and eight walks.
Harvey said he’s feeling good – no residual pain from his shoulder surgery – but he’s said that before.
The Mets hoped Harvey could ease back into the rotation, but with the way things are going, they need him to be at his best.
And, the sooner the better.
Fortunately for Jacob deGrom, pitching victories aren’t scrawny fish – he’s not required to throw this one back, no matter how off he looked in tonight’s 16-5 rout of Atlanta.
The Mets need deGrom more than ever with Matt Harvey struggling, and Steven Matz and Noah Syndergaard on the disabled list. Matz could be back in a month, but some reports have Syndergaard possibly out for up to three months.
DE GROM: Doesn’t kick away win. (AP)
DeGrom gave up five runs on eight hits with five strikeouts, but what was most alarming were five walks and 109 pitches thrown in that span.
“It’s perplexing,” manager Terry Collins said of deGrom’s lack of command. “His command wasn’t there. In the middle innings, he didn’t make his pitches.”
“I honestly don’t know why,” deGrom said. “I felt good early on, but for some reason, I lost control. I felt fine (physically). I just wasn’t able to control my pitches.
“It wasn’t a very good effort by me tonight. These guys did a tremendous job picking me up. The most important thing was we got the win.”
In an effort to find out what’s wrong with his control – it has been two straight starts in which he’s been off – deGrom said he’ll go to the videotape tomorrow in an attempt to pinpoint a mechanical flaw.
But, for right now, “I honestly don’t know.”
The Mets asked Matt Harvey to move up a day to replace Noah Syndergaard, April 27. Unbelievably, Harvey said he wasn’t ready and gave up six runs in 4.1 innings.
HARVEY: What will we get? (AP)
That isn’t the case tonight and Harvey (2-1, 4.25) will start on regular rest against a team that has handled him. Harvey is 3-5 with a 4.22 ERA lifetime against Atlanta, and leads us to the question: What Harvey will we get tonight?
For a variety of reasons, most of them injury related, May hasn’t been a kind month to Harvey. He is 4-7 with a 3.61 ERA in 17 career starts in May. We get a lot of statistics these days, but not much of an explanation.
Maybe he’s not sharp yet; maybe he’s not in terrific shape; and we know last year it was injury related. However, Harvey says he’s fine physically, and with Syndergaard and Steven Matz on the disabled list, the Mets will need him to pitch to his reputation.