Now that we’ve all had 48 hours to consider the big blow of losing our ace Matt Harvey, I can’t help but wonder about some things that were said during the press conference when GM Sandy Alderson, manager Terry Collins, and of course Matt Harvey all delivered the somber news and then fielded questions from the media.
First I want to make clear that this isn’t about playing the blame game. Heck, even Harvey’s agent Scott Boras said that the Mets did nothing inappropriate. “With his age, and he’s a power pitcher and the whole thing, this is a very normal course for a major leaguer,” Boras said. “It’s how you develop players. There’s nothing on that front that I think is an issue at all.”
If Boras believes the Mets have acted responsibly, then so do I…
However, something that Terry said on Monday didn’t ring true to me. When Collins was asked how long he’s known about Harvey’s strained forearm issue his response was, “I only became aware of it during the weekend.”
It seems that Sandy Alderson had been well aware of it for quite sometime and when the Mets ace was asked about it, Harvey said, “I’ve been getting my forearm treated for two months, but after my last start the pain was worse than at any time before. So I thought we should have it checked out.”
Again, this is not about blame, but it’s kind of a big deal when your ace is undergoing treatment on his arm for a lingering forearm tightness issue and the manager has no clue about it.
Had Collins known, maybe he might have had a stricter pitch count or given him an extra day of rest in between starts. It makes me wonder what else is going on in that clubhouse that Collins is not aware of?
Getting back to Boras, while Harvey seems to be of the mindset that he’ll do whatever it takes to avoid surgery, his agent confirmed that surgery will not be clear until the extent of the tear becomes fully apparent. That won’t happen until the swelling subsides in a couple of weeks.
In an interview with ESPN New York, Boras said:
“When you’re talking about the term ‘partial tear,’ you’re talking about 5 percent to 95 percent. You have to get in and get the specifics and get more information medically before we can really make a determination as to what we’re dealing with. There’s a lot of swelling in there now. … I’ve had situations with no surgery. I’ve had situations where the doctors recommended surgery.”
Harvey remains optimistic, and I remain optimistic for him.
The righthanded phenom was in the midst of a remarkable season with a 2.27 ERA and 191 strikeouts while starting the All-Star Game at Citi Field in his first full season.
Whether or not he has the surgery, know this… In most cases the pitcher returns just as good as before after Tommy John surgery and in some rare cases they came back even better.