Matt Harvey finally made his Spring Training debut on Wednesday afternoon as the Mets took on the Atlanta Braves at Champion Stadium in Osceola County, Florida.
Harvey may not be the ace he was supposed to be but all eyes were definitely on him as the Mets need him to be competitive this year in the middle of that rotation.
In Wednesday’s game, Harvey allowed one run on two hits and two walks while striking out two batters. Harvey clocked his fastball at 96 mph and hit 95 mph four times on his final batter of the afternoon. This is not a phenomenal pitching outing but it was a successful one for Harvey who is definitely in need of it.
All fans need to see right now is if Harvey can go out there and give the Mets a quality outing. We are not expecting the double-digit strikeouts a game from him that we saw early in his career but we need to see a consistent number 4 starter.
What was good to see was the velocity from Harvey picked up towards the end of the game. A big thing Harvey needs to do is be able to keep the ERA down this year and not flirt with one around 5.00.
When asked about his outing today this is what Harvey had to say:
"“The first inning was great, I think now it’s building off good innings and continuing that and getting good outings…It was good to get the first one out of the way and like I said Im excited for more outings and just to continue to build off today’s performance.”"
Matt Harvey is expecting bigger things for this season. When asked earlier in the spring about what to expect in 2018 he had this to say:
"“Going into this year I strive to be better than I was before. And there’s no reason why I can’t…I’m still 28 years old and there’s a lot left in the tank. I’m ready to go. I’m excited. The ball’s coming out better than it has in a long time. I’m just excited, like I said, finally having a normal offseason and getting my strength back. There’s no reason I can’t be better than I was before.”"
We should expect at least a stronger season from last year where Harvey dealt with the injury as well as when he went missing during one of the games. His head just wasn’t all there and he seems like he is more excited for this season to come. This rotation needs to be solid this year and having a guy like Harvey in the middle of it they will need him to step his game up from the past.