Matt Harvey is finally back!
Around nine months ago, Matt Harvey continued his poor pitching performances, and his worst one came on Independence Day, facing off against the Miami Marlins. Although the Mets won, Harvey, for the second straight game, could not reach the four innings pitched mark, and gave up five runs. Just a few days after, on July 7th, Harvey was diagnosed with thoracic outlet syndrome.
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Last year’s injury to Harvey, as major as it was, was not the worst he’s suffered in his career. At just age 28, Harvey has already had Tommy John Surgery. However, Harvey has shown that he is capable of bouncing back.
In 2015, Harvey won the NL Comeback Player of the Year award, and was also named the Mets World Series Game 1 starter (We all know what happened game 5 so I will refrain from discussing that).
The following year was where things began to break apart for Harvey. He only pitched 92 innings in 2016, and for the most part, looked like something was off with his pitching.
Facing teams he typically dominates, such as the Marlins and Braves, Harvey struggled mightily. Additionally, his career worst 4.86 ERA was something no one would have ever expected from Harvey from the day he debuted in 2012.
Walking off the mound, listening to a chorus of boos from, perhaps, restless Mets fans that did not realize that Harvey was struggling through an injury all pointed in the wrong direction. He had said that nothing was wrong — clearly something was.
Now, in Spring Training 2017, Harvey was not great early on, but he showed glimpses of his renewed potential little by little. At first, the concerns about the velocity of his fastball were evident, but those criticisms have started to slowly quiet down. In his last start, his best of the spring by far, he even 97 mph, so it’s possible he may already be getting over that hump.
Thursday marks a new chapter. Facing off against Jaime Garcia and the Braves, Harvey will look to shut up all his doubters, and dominate once again against a familiar foe. We know Harvey is capable of bouncing back, and there is no reason to not expect he will once again this season. The Dark Knight is back.