At this point, yesterday’s news feels like a bad dream, but the unfortunate reality is that we may not see Matt Harvey pitch again until 2015. Once again it seems as though we’ve been left at the altar and many are desperate for answers. How on earth could the team’s new ace, our lone bright spot to yet another lost season, have been pitching in pain for weeks? Who knew? More importantly, who is to blame?
It took little time for the blame game to take action yesterday as team GM, Sandy Alderson, and coach, Terry Collins, couldn’t make it out of their respective portion of the afternoon press conferences without contradicting one another. Sandy has known about Harvey’s discomfort for weeks, while Collins has been in the loop for mere days? Collins would go on to insinuate that the fans demand to see Harvey pitch somehow played a part… As is the case with most public relations nightmares, the Mets did themselves no favors yesterday.
Matt Harvey would soon take to the microphone in an attempt to shed light on his now uncertain future. Forearm discomfort for weeks but no sharp or shooting pain left the unsuspecting hurler in shock at the days’ news. The notion he could pitch through it, likely spurred on by thoughts of invincibility will now leave him on the outside looking in for sometime.
The honest truth is that there is a level of shared blame between management and players when injuries are mishandled. Management often pushes too hard and players are almost always less than forthcoming when it comes to what ails them. We’ll never know the full truth when it comes to what tarnished the Mets shiny new penny, but it likely lies somewhere in the middle. Nonetheless it’s the fans who will be left to pick up the pieces of their shattered dreams.
What will come of this offseason? Once thought to be active in both the free agent and trade markets, the loss of their ace will almost certainly see the Mets hold on to their pitching prospects, limiting their trade potential. Furthermore, the loss of “Harvey Day” will impact ticket sales and could provide yet another reason to avoid big spending.
As is almost always the case, fans have more than enough reasons to be mad. Not only did they lose a star yesterday, but a shadow was cast over the team’s future. Fans have waited long enough to see things turn around in Queens, and Matt Harvey represented that change. Now we fall back to a level of uncertainty that we are unfortunately all too familiar with. So as the sting starts to subside, Mets fans will start to realize that the important question isn’t who is to blame, it’s where do we go from here?
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