Matt Harvey, eight years ago, started the 2013 All-Star Game at Citi Field as the toast of New York. Today, he’s barely hanging on…
Matt Harvey, if not for the fact he’s a starting pitcher for perennial last-place Baltimore Orioles, would no doubt find himself looking to tie on with another team on a minor-league contract or sitting at home; asking himself – “What the hell happened here?”
Count the years back to 2013 when Harvey was the Joe Namath of New York City and starting the 2013 All-Star Game before an adoring crowd of Mets fans at Citi Fans – and a national television audience that catapulted him to Hollywood type stardom.
Over the years since then, this space has occupied numerous stories about Matt Harvey that have chronicled his career since then.
Matt Harvey: Crawling Through The Wreckage
Almost always, those stories were written with a combination of frustration, anger, and disappointment at the direction Matt Harvey’s career took since those glory days.
Injuries, many of them serious enough to involve long-term rehab, were an obvious constraint. But when Harvey insisted on painting his own picture of where he should be during those rehabs (he insisted on staying with the Mets), tension grew.
Matt Harvey’s decision to “go Hollywood,” inviting the New York Post’s Page Six to follow him around Manhattan’s nightlife with a model on each arm, things really began to go south.
Forget all that, though, because stuff happens, and let’s fast forward to today.
Earlier this week, Matt Harvey made a start for the Orioles against the Toronto Blue Jays.
He lasted 4.3 innings, surrendering six runs on nine hits while ballooning his ERA to 7.70.
Unlike his heyday with the Mets, the biggest disappointment was Matt Harvey’s inability to slam the door on the Jays, who went 6-10 with runners in scoring position, an indication Harvey no longer has an out pitch.
Mets fans will recall Matt Harvey’s return to Citi Field on May 12, giving him a standing ovation that almost brought Harvey to tears.
Alas, his line that day while taking the loss shows 4.1 innings, eight hits, and seven earned runs. Five of every eight pitches (50-78) caught the plate, but they hit the fat part in too many instances, very unlike Harvey in his heyday.
Harvey’s New Approach – Same Results
What’s happened with Harvey this year is anyone’s guess, but it was a different story back in Spring Training when he took a liking and respect for Orioles pitching coaches Darren Holmes and Chris Holt.
As he told reporters then, “Instead of me searching and trying to figure out what I am doing wrong and how to fix it, [Holmes and Holt have] been able to pinpoint that and kind of show me videos from when I threw before. [W]hether it’s load your back hip a little bit more or you know, create some scapular flexion here, look you used to do this, and you’re not doing it anymore.”
“They’ve been unbelievable with that, and obviously, the work’s not done. We’re not satisfied, and we’re going to keep pounding those mechanics and the work in so that everything can fall into place and just concentrate on getting people out and executing each pitch”.
Notice Harvey’s first words in that quote about “Instead of me searching and trying to figure out what I am doing wrong and how to fix it”…this was one of Matt Harvey’s trademarks when he was with the Mets…I’ve got this thing, leave me alone and let me pitch.
Not good, and as much as injuries, Harvey’s attitude led to his digression.
With all of the positive energy early in this season, the numbers put up by Harvey speak for themselves. If not for the fact he’s pitching for the woeful Orioles, chances are slim to none. Harvey would still be in the big leagues.
Still showing signs remnants of stubbornness, Matt Harvey is not open to a bullpen assignment, noted here in this Tweet.
Matt Harvey: A Journey Like No Other
Here’s What Readers Are Saying…
Edward Drennan He’s still in a place the majority of us envy. Getting paid to play baseball and getting paid quite well.
Chris Joyce It’s crazy
Steven Fernandez After that Thoracic surgery he was never the same.
Closing Published Comments And Final Thoughts
Granted, The Matt Harver saga is old, and for most fans (except me I guess), and worn out. Thus, the reaction from readers follows that, as if to say, who cares?
I get that, and with this, we’ll close out published comments.