Matt Harvey (baseball)
|New York Mets – No. 33|
March 27, 1989 |
New London, Connecticut
|Bats: Right||Throws: Right|
|July 26, 2012 for the New York Mets|
(through 2013 season)
|Earned run average||2.39|
|Career highlights and awards|
Matthew Edward Harvey (born March 27, 1989) is an American professional baseball pitcher for the New York Mets of Major League Baseball. The Mets drafted him with the seventh overall pick in the first round of the 2010 MLB Draft. In his major league debut on July 26, 2012 against the Arizona Diamondbacks, Harvey set a new club record with 11 strikeouts in his major league debut while earning his first career victory. Harvey previously played at Fitch Senior High School in Groton, Connecticut and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Harvey was first drafted out of Fitch Senior High School in the third round of the 2007 MLB Draft by the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim but opted not to sign. He instead attended University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he pitched for three years as a Tar Heel. During his collegiate career, Harvey went 22-7 with 3.73 ERA in 238.2 innings. He ranks ninth all-time in UNC history in strikeouts (263) and 10th in wins (22).
Harvey spent the summers of ’08 and ’09 pitching for the Chatham Anglers of the Cape Cod Baseball League. Harvey was a key component of the Anglers’ 2008 bullpen, completing the season with a 0.83 ERA, the lowest on the team, pitching 21.2 innings and striking out 29 of 92 batters faced. Harvey returned to Chatham in 2009 after a difficult sophomore year on the mound. As Harvey explains, he had lost some of the mechanics and flexibility that had made him such a great pitcher throughout high school and the beginning of his college career. Although his ’09 summer was not as impressive as the previous one, his time on the Cape helped him return to the basics and set him on the road to becoming the seventh overall draft pick in the 2010 first year player draft. According to his pitching coach at UNC, Scott Forbes, Harvey returned from the 2009 Cape League season with “a more professional approach.”
Harvey was selected as the seventh overall pick by the New York Mets in the 2010 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft. Harvey was listed at 6' 4" and 210 lbs, batting and throwing right-handed.
In 2011, Harvey's first professional season in the Mets minor-league system, he split time between the single-A St. Lucie Mets and the Double-A Binghamton Mets. With St. Lucie in the Florida State League (FSL), he went 8–2 with a 2.37 ERA and recorded 92 strikeouts in 76 innings. His performance garnered him two FSL Pitcher of the Week awards and he was selected as a FSL Mid-Season All-Star. Although selected to appear in the FSL All-Star game, Harvey did not pitch because he was promoted to Double-A Binghamton.
In the Eastern League with Binghamton, he went 5–3 with a 4.53 ERA and 64 strikeouts in 59.2 innings. Harvey also pitched in the 2011 All-Star Futures Game, recording a save for the winning U.S. team over the World team.
Harvey was ranked as the Mets organization's second best prospect in 2012 and the 34th overall best prospect by MLB.com. He was invited to spring training by the Mets that year but did not make the team. Instead, he was promoted to the club's Triple-A affiliate, the Buffalo Bisons of the International League (IL).
In the first half of his 2012 season at Triple-A, Harvey went 7–4 with a 3.39 ERA in 18 starts. That performance earned him IL Mid-Season All-Star honors. His strong pitching, plus injuries to major leaguers Mike Pelfrey and Dillon Gee, put him in contention for the fifth spot in the Mets rotation. Despite spending more time pitching at Triple-A than other top draft picks — 105 innings, recording a 3.34 ERA and striking out over a batter per inning through mid-July — the Mets front office (headed by general manager Sandy Alderson) did not want to promote Harvey until his consistency and control were better.
After an injury to staff ace Johan Santana and replacements to the Mets' major-league rotation failed to turn in quality starts, general manager Sandy Alderson and Mets manager Terry Collins backtracked and decided to promote Harvey to the majors, ending his stay with the Bisons with a 7–5 record and 3.68 ERA. Harvey stayed in the rotation for the remainder of the season as the fifth starter.
In Harvey's debut, a July 26 start against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field in Phoenix, Arizona, he pitched 5.1 innings, giving up three hits and three walks while recording 11 strikeouts. Harvey recorded his first major-league strikeout on an 89 mph slider on a 1–2 count against the first batter he faced, Gerardo Parra of the Diamondbacks. He then had his first major league hit, a two-out double on a 2–1 82 mph curveball off Wade Miley in the top of the following inning. Harvey set a Mets franchise record for strikeouts in a pitching debut (11) and became the first player in modern baseball history (since 1900) to strike out 10 or more batters and get two hits in his major-league debut. After the game, Mets manager Terry Collins said:
“I haven't seen 98 out of a starting pitcher in quite some time. He's lived up to exactly what everybody's talked about.”
In his second major-league start, against the San Francisco Giants, Harvey pitched six innings, gave up two earned runs, three walks and struck out seven in his first loss. His 18 total strikeouts were a Mets record for a rookie over his first two games of his career. After three straight losses, Harvey was able to earn his second win against the Cincinnati Reds on August 16. In his next two starts, Harvey got a no-decision and a win against the Rockies and Phillies, respectively. Both were quality starts and he struck out 15 combined in the games. Over his first 15 at-bats in seven starts, he posted impressive batting numbers with a .462 average, two doubles and three RBI.
Harvey then went on to lose his next two starts and record a no-decision in his last outing of the season on September 19. Despite more opportunities to pitch, Mets management ended his season due to an innings-pitched limit. He finished his inaugural season with a 3-5 record, a 2.73 ERA over 10 starts in which he pitched 59.1 innings and recorded 70 strikeouts. He surrendered 42 hits and 26 walks.
Harvey continued to garner accolades for his arm strength and control in 2013. New York sports radio host Mike Francesa has compared Harvey to standouts like Justin Verlander, Andy Pettite and Curt Schilling. After watching Harvey's first two starts of the 2013 season, during which he struck out 19 in 14 innings, former Mets manager Bobby Valentine said Harvey had the potential to be "the best Met pitcher to ever wear the uniform."  His April performance garnered him Pitcher of the Month honors after he posted posted a 1.56 ERA with 46 strikeouts in 40.1 innings. Opposing batters hit .153 against him.
On April 13, Harvey had a no-hit bid through 6 2/3 innings against the Minnesota Twins until Justin Morneau hit a solo home run in the bottom of the seventh inning. On May 7, Harvey retired the first 20 Chicago White Sox batters he faced until Alex Rios broke up the perfect game with an infield single. Harvey left the game after nine innings, having surrendered only the one hit, as the Mets won in 10 innings. He was subsequently featured on the cover of the May 20, 2013 issue of Sports Illustrated magazine, dubbed "The Dark Knight of Gotham". On June 18, Harvey took another no-hitter into the seventh inning, but was stymied by an infield single off the bat of the Atlanta Braves' Jason Heyward. Harvey notched a career-high 13 strikeouts in the game, giving up three hits over seven innings.
As the mid-season All-Star break approached, team management talked about limiting Harvey's innings to ensure his pitching health. Harvey had thrown 117 innings in 17 starts at the time, which put him on a season-long pace for 240-250 innings. Mets manager Terry Collins said Harvey would not be allowed to pitch more than 215-220 innings.
Harvey was the starting pitcher for the 2013 MLB All-Star Game, which took place at the Mets' home ballpark, Citi Field. On August 7, Harvey pitched his first career complete game shutout, giving up four hits and striking out six in a 5-0 win over the Colorado Rockies. On August 26, Harvey was diagnosed with a partial tear of the ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow and was placed on the disabled list. He had logged 178 1/3 innings at that point.
On September 17, Harvey said he would try rehab before opting for surgery. But the Mets announced on October 4 that Harvey would have Tommy John surgery to repair his right elbow. Because of the procedure, Harvey was expected to miss the entire 2014 season. The procedure was performed on October 22.
Awards and honors
- MiLB.com Organization All-Star (2011)
- All-Star Futures Game Selection (2011)
- Florida State League Mid-Season All-Star (2011)
- 2x FSL Pitcher of the Week (April 18 and May 31, 2011)
- International League Mid-Season All-Star (2012)
- National League Player of the Week (April 8–14, 2013)
- National League Pitcher of the Month (April 2013)
- All-Star selection (2013)
Harvey is a power pitcher with a 6 foot 4 inch (1.93 m), 225 pound frame that is suitable for heavy workloads and can generate great arm speed. He has a four-pitch repertoire that includes a fastball, slider, curveball and change-up. He throws his fastball in both four-seam and two-seam varieties, where it is consistently in the range of 94–97 mph (tops out at 100 mph) with movement; it is considered a plus pitch. Harvey usually relies on his slider, which comes in at 88–92 mph and at times is a plus pitch. It gets good rotation and tilts when thrown well, but will occasionally flatten out. In high school, Harvey's curveball was an overhand power curve that had plus potential, but he doesn't throw it frequently in the majors because he favors the slider. Harvey's fourth option is the change-up, which he commands well in the range of 86–88 mph. His change-up is considered an average pitch.
Harvey was born in New London, Connecticut and grew up in Mystic, Connecticut. He has two older sisters. He grew up as a Yankees fan and frequently attended their games. Harvey played summer baseball for numerous travel teams across the country, including the South Florida Bandits, the Midland Redskins, and the East Coast Grays. He was ranked as the number four national prospect coming out of high school and the number two right-handed pitcher overall. His father played baseball and football for the University of Connecticut, where he reached the 1972 College World Series. Harvey majored in sports administration while at the University of North Carolina. He is a fan of the New York Rangers and the New England Patriots.
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- "Amato: No Regrets For Harvey - University of North Carolina Athletics". http://www.tarheelblue.com. Retrieved May 24, 2012.
- "Mets sign first-round Draft pick RHP Matt Harvey". Mets.com. Retrieved May 24, 2012.
- "Player Bio: Matt Harvey". http://www.tarheelblue.com. Retrieved May 24, 2012.
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- "Matt Harvey Stats, Bio, Photos, Highlights". MiLB.com. Retrieved July 20, 2012.
- "Bour wins All-Star Home Run Derby". MiLB.com. Retrieved July 20, 2012.
- "Harvey gets save in futures game". ESPN.
- "2012 Prespect Watch". MLB.com. Retrieved May 24, 2012.
- "Mets prospect Matt Harvey disappointed not to make team out of spring training". http://www.nj.com. Retrieved May 24, 2012.
- "Matt Harvey might be promoted to starting rotation". Newsday.com. Retrieved July 20, 2012.
- "Harvey's Peers Didn't Get Stuck in Triple-A". WallStreetJournal.com. Retrieved July 20, 2012.
- "Matt Harvey won't be promoted by Mets to start Saturday". newsday.com. Retrieved July 20, 2012.
- July 2012 "Harvey set for Major League debut on Thursday".
- "Terry discusses Matt Harvey, expectations, and plan". metsblog.com.
- August 2012 "Harvey impressive again, but Mets fall to Giants".
- August 2012 "Harvey does it all as Mets win Cincy finale".
- August 2012 "Harvey shows Mets gritty side in win over Phils".
- August 2012 "Harvey sharp, but offense, 'pen come up short".
- Best, Neil. "A night with Bobby Valentine on the set of SNY". Newsday.com. Retrieved April 12, 2013.
- Paul Newberry (June 18, 2013). "Harvey leads Mets to 4-3 win over Braves". Associated Press. Retrieved July 2, 2013.
- Dave Hutchinson (June 29, 2013). "Zack Wheeler hopes to not tip pitches in Citi Field debut on Sunday". Newark Star-Ledge. Retrieved July 2, 2013.
- Stephen Lorenzo, Chris Dell (June 30, 2013). "Mets could shut down Matt Harvey before season's end as precautionary measure". New York Daily News. Retrieved July 2, 2013.
- Anthony DiComo (July 15, 2013). "Harvey gets the honor of starting on home field". Mets.com. Retrieved July 15, 2013.
- "Matt Harvey tosses first career shutout, Wilmer Flores gets first hit, RBIs as Mets beat Rockies". Newsday. Retrieved August 8, 2013.
- "Mets' Matt Harvey has partial tear of UCL in right elbow | MLB.com: News". Mlb.mlb.com. August 26, 2013. Retrieved August 27, 2013.
- "Matt Harvey of New York Mets will try rehab before resorting to surgery - ESPN New York". Espn.go.com. September 18, 2013. Retrieved November 15, 2013.
- "Matt Harvey to have elbow surgery, miss 2014". WABC TV. October 4, 2013. Retrieved October 4, 2013.
- Castillo, Jorge (date=October 22, 2013). "Matt Harvey undergoes Tommy John surgery". The Star-Ledger. Retrieved October 22, 2013.
- Zack Meisel (April 15, 2013). "Off to historic start, Harvey named NL Player of Week". Retrieved July 2, 2013.
- "Extended scouting report: Matt Harvey, rhp, North Carolina". http://rule4report.com. Retrieved July 20, 2012.
- "2010 Draft Scouting Reports: Matt Harvey". MLB.com. Retrieved July 20, 2012.
- "Twitter / MattHarvey33: This is our house!!!! #Patriots". Twitter.com. Retrieved August 26, 2013.
- "Anne V Is Dating N.Y. Mets Player Matt Harvey: PDA Picture!". Us Weekly.
- Career statistics and player information from MLB, or Baseball-Reference, or Fangraphs, or Baseball-Reference (Minors)
- Matt Harvey on Twitter
- North Carolina Tar Heels bio