As the Mets continue sinking faster than the Titanic, all eyes will be on Matt Harvey tonight in Arizona as he makes his highly anticipated Major League debut.
The 23-year-old is likely feeling tons of pressure to be the savior of the franchise based on how the team has gone through its annual post All-Star break collapse.
But Harvey has to just take a deep breath and take it one step at a time.
We as fans certainly want a change, and seeing Harvey will be a nice change of pace. Terry Collins and the organization also want change.
However, no one is asking Harvey to save the franchise right from his first pitch. There will guaranteed be struggles along the way, but it will be good to see how he handles them at the big league level.
I’ve always been a proponent of giving the prospects a chance, especially if the big league club is falling apart. Harvey is 23 years old and has 46 starts in the minors, in which he’s 20-10.
How much more “seasoning” could the guy have needed? He’s excelled at every level so far and earned his chance to start tonight. It’s not like this is his first start coming out of college.
Harvey isn’t exactly Stephen Strasburg, who only needed a few tune-up starts before making his big league debut. But he’s still got plenty of talent on the mound.
Growing pains are what make big league players better. Sure, it stinks to get sent back to the minors after being called up (like we just saw with Lucas Duda), but hopefully it further ignites a fire under that player to get back to the bigs.
Who knows? Maybe Harvey will impress so much that he remains in the rotation the rest of the season and begins next year as one of the five Mets’ starters.
But it’s way too early to be thinking about that. Let’s see how he does tonight.
What I’m hoping doesn’t happen is that once Johan Santana is eligible to return from the disabled list, Harvey gets immediately sent down. A handful of starts is not enough to see what the kid is made of.
Jeremy Hefner’s been just OK, so I would much rather see Harvey work through his problems as a starter and Hefner in the bullpen or the minors.
Much luck to Harvey as he begins his big league career. Let’s not give up hope just yet, Mets fans. Remember what happened last year with the World Series champion St. Louis Cardinals.
Some Notes On Matt Havey
MATT HARVEY: Will make his major league debut tonight. Harvey, 23,was 7-5 with a 3.68 ERA (45 earned runs/110.0 innings) and ranks third in the International League with 112 strikeouts in 20 starts for Buffalo this year. He was named to the International League All-Star team and tossed two scoreless and hitless innings with two strikeouts in the Triple-A All-Star Game, earning MiLB.com Top Star honors for his performance.
FIRST-ROUND STARTS: Matt Harvey, who was the Mets’ first-round pick in the 2010 First-Year Player Draft will become the 10th pitcher selected in the first-round by the Mets to start a game for the club. The others and the year they were drafted are: Les Rohr (1965), Jon Matlack (1967), Randy Sterling (1969), Tim Leary (1979), Dwight Gooden (1982), Paul Wilson (1994), Aaron Heilman (2001), Philip Humber (2004) and Mike Pelfrey (2005). Two other Mets’ first-round picks, Billy Traber (2000) and Scott Kazmir (2002), started games in the majors, but not for New York.