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Mets RHP Matt Harvey determined to bring a championship to Queens

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Jun 23, 2016; Atlanta, GA, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Matt Harvey (33) pitches against the Atlanta Braves during the second inning at Turner Field. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports
Jun 23, 2016; Atlanta, GA, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Matt Harvey (33) pitches against the Atlanta Braves during the second inning at Turner Field. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports /
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There’s no doubt Mets pitcher Matt Harvey is determined to get back to the Matt Harvey from 2013. Harvey is determined to bring a championship to Queens this season.

Thursday night, Matt Harvey joined Mets Hot Stove on SNY to talk about his recovery and expectations. Harvey’s coming off an awful season for the Mets due to thoracic outlet syndrome.

After soreness in his arm and numbness in his fingers ended Harvey’s season early, he may have an extra bit of pressure in 2017. Additionally, as you may remember, Harvey’s season was riddled with short outings and boo’s in 2016. He remembers this, and acknowledges it.

"“There was a lot of frustration, not only from [hearing boos] but also from how I felt. I wanted to help the team and be out there every fifth day. I wanted to do everything I can, not only to help the Mets but the city of New York. It was a tough experience, but I’m glad it’s over.”"

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Harvey told SNY’s Nelson Figueroa and Gary Apple that all of his issues are gone and he’s ready to get back to his 2013 form. But, can Harvey get back to the dominant pitcher he was?

There’s definitely a new role for Harvey, who now will see himself behind Noah Syndergaard and Jacob deGrom. In 2013, he finished with a 2.27 ERA in 26 starts.

The major thing Harvey will need in 2017 is his confidence. When Harvey is confident on the mound, he’s at his best. As we’ve seen in the past, when he feels good, he can be unstoppable. And he acknowledged this. Harvey mentioned that he has to get back to how he threw in 2013, pitching with confidence and pitching to contact.

He doesn’t have the pressure of being the number one guy in the Mets rotation anymore. However, he does have the pressure of bouncing back to the Harvey of seasons past. If he can go out and compete with the others, Harvey sees big things happening for this Mets team.

"“Every day I walk into that locker room and look around and you can envision a parade with those guys in there.”"

This year is different for Harvey, compared to 2015 when he was coming back from Tommy John surgery. The surgery he had this offseason relieved pain and tension in his body.

He’s been able to work on his full arsenal of pitches throughout Spring Training. When he was coming back from Tommy John he had to gradually bring back each pitch.

There’s no question that he’ll be better than what he was last season. Being around the other star pitchers and seeing their performances will drive Harvey to be his best.

Similar to deGrom and Steven Matz, if Harvey can stay healthy, it can be another huge boost for the Mets. Last season he had lost all of his confidence, he was leaving fastballs over the plate, and was regularly getting booed off of the Citi Field mound.

Next: Is Dominic Smith the next great Mets first baseman?

My prediction for the 27 year-old RHP is that he returns to the Matt Harvey from 2015. He’ll have a set role behind deGrom and Syndegaard which will take pressure off of him.

Now, with Harvey determined more than ever to prove himself, he’ll bounce back. The fanbase will back him up once again and he’ll be a key factor for the 2017 Mets.

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