The Matt Harvey Non-Story

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On Sunday, I read this excellent article by Kevin Kernan of the New York Post who says it’s not easy to silence a strong personality like Matt Harvey.

Harvey still believes he will pitch in 2014 for the Mets even though he deleted his tweet that Harvey Day would return in 2014.

I don’t see anything wrong with a player keeping a positive perspective on his own rehab and sharing that message with his followers on social media. That’s exactly what outlets like Twitter and Facebook are for.

Kernan reports that the Mets have told Harvey they do not want him doing individual interviews anymore and that he will only be allowed to group interviews so that the team can control the message.

He also shares an exchange he had with Harvey this weekend:

When I saw Harvey in the clubhouse Sunday I said to him, “So you’ve been shut down verbally, too.’’

He smiled and said, “Apparently.’’

I think it was “small ball” by the Amazins’ if Harvey had to delete his tweet at the urging of the Mets. I mean come on…

Slightly off-topic, but I also read a post on MetsBlog by Matt Cerrone this afternoon: 

I’ve heard from more than one person in the clubhouse that Harvey was very insulted and dejected by having his locker moved from being around the big-league players in to the way back of the room. I remember being confused when I got to St. Lucie and looked around the room to see where his stuff was, only to be told he was in the corner by the showers. I don’t blame him for being embarrassed. I was embarrassed for him. I hope this only motivates him more than he already is. My first thought when I saw the location of his locker was: This is ridiculous, I hope he comes back and goes 30-0 next year. Imagine how he feels…

Lastly, let’s be honest, there is a decent chance his recovery ends up being more interesting in September than anything occurring in Citi Field. They may end up being able to charge more for his minor-league rehab starts than actual games. 

As far as I know, players who are out for the season have always had their lockers moved away from the general population in spring training and during the regular season, so this is nothing new.

Jeremy Hefner also has his locker next to Harvey so this is not a form of Mets punishment or any reason for Harvey, his fans or anyone else to be embarrassed. 

I called Dave Conde, who has been covering the Mets for MMO in St. Lucie, and asked him what he thought. He told me that Harvey was as happy as could be on Sunday and that he saw him joking with Ike Davis by his locker, and mostly hanging out with David Wright who has a community table in front of his locker. “I never saw anything that would suggest Harvey is upset or angry or embarrassed. Harvey was the opposite of all that and seemed happy and thrilled to be there.”

David told me that whenever he enters the clubhouse Harvey is usually seated at that table with Davis and Daniel Murphy – all talking baseball, movies and other stuff with Wright. “There’s a close camaraderie between them.”

In my opinion Harvey is doing nothing wrong.

I do think that the Mets are overreacting a little by trying to control a dominant personality like him, especially his Twitter account.

Let the guy have his fun.

Let the guy think whatever he wants about when he’ll pitch again.

The important thing is that no matter what he says, the Mets will ultimately decide if and when he’ll return this season. That decision lies with the Mets’ medical team and even Matt Harvey knows and understands that.

If Harvey pushes that envelope and is throwing 98 mph fastballs in July and runs off a streak of 30 scoreless innings with 48 strikeouts during rehab games in the minors, I’m sure the discussion changes. But that would be a good thing not a bad. Let’s get there first.


About Joe D 7946 Articles
I'm a lifelong Mets fan who loves writing and talking about the Amazins' 24/7. From the Miracle in 1969 to the magic of 1986, and even the near misses in '73, '00 and '15, I've experienced it all - the highs and the lows. I started Mets Merized Online in 2005 to feed my addiction and interact with other passionate Met fans like you. Follow me on Twitter @metsmerized.