UPDATE, 2:19 PM:
According to two tweets from the Mets, Matt Harvey saw Dr. James Andrews today for a second opinion regarding the UCL tear in his elbow. The team noted that Harvey is on his way back to New York, and that they expect to have more information tomorrow.
Today is a huge day for injured Mets ace Matt Harvey. The 24 year old, who was diagnosed with a partially torn UCL in his pitching elbow roughly three weeks ago, is scheduled to visit Dr. James Andrews today for a second opinion.
When news of Harvey’s injury broke, it was widely reported that he would have to undergo Tommy John surgery. However, since the swelling in Harvey’s elbow was significant at the time of his diagnosis, the severity of the tear in his UCL is not yet known.
It was reported last week that Harvey had visited Mets doctors a second time, but that report wasn’t accurate. According to what’s been stated publicly, today’s visit with Dr. Andrews will be both his second examination and a second opinion.
With the severity of the tear (percentage wise) Harvey has in his UCL still unknown, it’s baffling that many reporters are still running with the notion that Tommy John surgery for Harvey is close to a guaranteed outcome.
It’s been reported that Harvey has a “low grade strain” of the UCL. If the UCL turns out to be torn only a miniscule percentage, the recommendation is likely to be for rehab and/or PRP (platelet rich plasma) therapy.
Since news of the injury broke, Harvey has indicated that his preference is to go the non surgical route. While Harvey won’t delude himself if the doctors tell him surgery is the best option, it appears that he would rather avoid it. Harvey has been quoted as saying that he won’t make an immediate decision after today’s visit with Dr. Andrews, and it’s unknown whether Harvey or the Mets will provide an update after Harvey is examined.
If the recommendation is for surgery and Harvey heeds that recommendation, he’ll likely miss most, if not all of the 2014 campaign. If the recommendation is for rehab and/or PRP therapy, Harvey should be ready for spring training in February.
There are a number of pitchers who have rehabbed the same type of injury Harvey has and avoided surgery completely. There’s absolutely no reason to count out Harvey – especially when you consider the fact that the severity of his injury hasn’t yet been revealed.