The Dark Knight finally saw some light at the end of the tunnel with a two hit 1-0 shutout over the wilting Chicago White Sox.
It may not have been the better team from the Windy City, but this victory was shades of vintage Matt Harvey, and for the first time in 10 starts, he made it to the 7th inning – and even managed to get the win thanks to a well timed home run.
How sweet it must have felt to come off the field to the sound of Mets fans cheering instead of jeering in what has been two months of mechanical and emotional madness.
With both teams donning Memorial Day camouflage duds, Harvey heroically retired the first 13 batters, then got some dandy defense in the 5th from Wilmer Flores, filling in for Duda at first base.
Harvey was put to the test in the top of the 7th in a scoreless tie with runners on second and third, and one out. Fortunately the .220 hitting Todd Frazier popped up to first and Shuck had no such luck the second time around, grounding out to short.
“You kind of think about the worst at that point,” Harvey said. “You start getting some negative thoughts that creep in your head.”
Asked about his decision not to face the music after his last start, Harvey said: “I was frustrated with myself and I know that’s not right and not acceptable. But for me there was a lot of emotions, a lot of frustration and I had been beating at the bush over the same questions.”
Neil Walker was worthy of receiving a medal of honor for keeping Harvey’s mental state intact with a 397 ft. home run into the left field seats, his 12th of the season.
It was also a great day for the recently called up Rookie Ty Kelly, who singled in the 5th for his first major league hit.
Next up, LHP Steven Matz, 7-1, takes his six straight wins to the mound against Mat Latos, the 6-1 right-hander who will attempt to right the wayward ship of the White Sox last 10 game, 2-8 record. Since recording just five outs in his season debut, Matz has been nearly untouchable, going 7-0 with a 1.13 ERA in seven starts.
Monday’s win for Matt Harvey is his first career win when the Mets have scored two or fewer runs. Harvey had previously been 0-17 with a 2.67 ERA in 30 career starts where the Mets had scored two or fewer runs.
With his 7.0 scoreless innings vs. the White Sox, Harvey has now thrown 16.0 scoreless innings in two career starts vs. Chicago. He struck out 19 and walked two in the two starts. His other start vs. the White Sox came on May 7, 2013 and he tossed 9.0 scoreless innings, retiring the first 20 batters he faced in that game.
The Mets are 29-21 after 50 games in 2016. Last season, the Mets were 27-23 after 50 games.
The Mets have 72 home runs this season and have now homered in 10 straight games, extending a season-high. The last time the Mets had a homer streak longer than nine games was a 13-game streak that stretched from October 3, 2012 – April 16, 2013. The 72 homers through the team’s first 50 games are the most in team history after 50 games.