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Mets expected to shut down Matt Harvey at 200 innings

Aug 13, 2013, 10:15 AM EST

Matt Harvey Getty Images

Matt Harvey‘s case for the Cy Young award will likely take a hit late in the season, as Anthony DiComo of MLB.com reports that the Mets plan to shut down the 24-year-old right-hander once he reaches 200 innings.

There’s no official plan, but according to DiComo “the working assumption is that they will not allow him to exceed last year’s total of 169.1 innings by much more than 30.”

Harvey has thrown 159.2 innings through 23 starts and has 10 starts left if he remains on the usual schedule, which would add up to around 230 innings. So to keep Harvey at 200 innings or fewer the Mets would likely have to skip at least four of his starts, which would mean missing the final three weeks of the season or having his turn in the rotation skipped multiple times before then.

  1. dondada10 - Aug 13, 2013 at 10:22 AM

    “… the Mets would likely have to skip at least four of his starts, which would mean missing the final three weeks of the season or having his turn in the rotation skipped multiple times before then.”

    Which is what they were doing with their 6-man rotation. But then Parnell got hurt and Torres was needed out of the pen. Mejia emerged, but then Hefner went down. So now they’re back to a 5 man rotation which is going to lead to Harvey and Wheeler getting shut down with about a month to go.

    I’d rather call up Rafael Montero and go back to a 6-man rotation. You get to see Harvey and Wheeler later into the year and it also frees Montero from the hell that is the Pacific Coast League.

    Hell, the open rotation spot in AAA would allow Noah Syndergaard to get a few starts. I guess that’s just all too practical for the Mets. They’ll probably sign Jose Lima to make a few starts.

    • digbysellers - Aug 13, 2013 at 10:39 AM

      That would be quite a feat for the Mets to accomplish since old Jose is dead chief.

      • dondada10 - Aug 13, 2013 at 10:54 AM

        “Weekend at Bernies.” Rent it.

      • Glenn - Aug 13, 2013 at 3:29 PM

        “Weekend at Bernie’s” – watch Andrew McCarthy’s acting in this. He’s stiffer than the guy playing the corpse.

    • digbysellers - Aug 13, 2013 at 11:06 AM

      For Christ sakes dondada10, no one is going to have a sex change operation huh?!

      I’m way ahead of you pal.

    • bolweevils2 - Aug 13, 2013 at 11:52 AM

      The Mets have 46 game left. With a 5 man rotation Harvey pitches 9 more games. (Actually, in theory since he’s pitching today he could get the final game of the year, making it 10 games. But I doubt they’d send him out for game 162.) With a 6 man rotation, he’d pitch 8 games. So that would only save him 7 innings or so. It’s not going to drop him from 230 innings to the 200 innings they want.

  2. yahmule - Aug 13, 2013 at 10:35 AM

    People don’t know Verducci is full of hot gas by now?

    If anything, Harvey seems to be getting stronger.

    • stex52 - Aug 13, 2013 at 10:38 AM

      Speaking as a Harvey Fantasy League owner, I like your argument.

      But this is the second time I’ve heard that they are going to shut him down. I’m braced for it, as much as you can.

      • yahmule - Aug 13, 2013 at 10:47 AM

        I own the crap out of him. I’m bracing myself for the same news about Patrick Corbin.

      • stex52 - Aug 13, 2013 at 12:39 PM

        Chris Sale and Shelby Miller here, too. I went young and successful. Time to pay the piper.

      • yahmule - Aug 13, 2013 at 2:35 PM

        I’m prepared for the worst. I have Kershaw or Price anchoring most squads and my ratios can absorb a little damage.

        Where do you play? I have teams @ NFBC and CBS.

    • Joe - Aug 13, 2013 at 10:53 AM

      What does Verducci have to do with this?

      • dondada10 - Aug 13, 2013 at 10:56 AM

        The “Verducci Effect.” He claims pitchers must escalate in innings gradually through their career.

      • Joe - Aug 13, 2013 at 11:24 AM

        Ah, right.

        While it’s true that the Verducci Effect has been debunked, it’s also true – if you believe the below article by a Baseball Prospectus author published at Deadspin – that the more pitches you throw this year, the greater the injury chance next year. And since the Mets have a better chance to contend next season, perhaps it’s wise to limit Harvey’s pitches this season. There’s no formula for deciding when, so the arbitrary 200-IP cutoff seems as good as any other.

        http://deadspin.com/5985013/time-to-retire-the-verducci-effect-what-really-predicts-pitcher-injuries

        This is in direct contrast to the Strasburg situation last year, in which he played for a team that was headed for the playoffs. In his case, you might have argued that it would be OK to marginally increase his injury risk in 2013 if it brought you a championship in 2012.

      • yahmule - Aug 13, 2013 at 11:47 AM

        I think players should be assessed as individuals. Harvey is an absolute horse and a full workload this year wouldn’t affect him in the slightest. IMO, the damage that happens to pitchers is when they’re left in games when they have nothing left. This was what really happened to Mark Prior. The Mets have actually been very good in managing Harvey’s pitch counts.

      • Joe - Aug 13, 2013 at 12:54 PM

        But what if you’re wrong?

        Obviously nobody can predict an injury, but the fact is that there is a relationship between higher total pitch counts and injuries the following year. And why increase that risk in games that are meaningless for your team this year? There’s no effective science that would tell you exactly where to draw the line, but it seems to me that not drawing a line somewhere is a bit irresponsible.

      • yahmule - Aug 13, 2013 at 6:18 PM

        Well, a 30 inning bump is still pretty conservative. I wouldn’t set that as a firm limit. I would assess him again at that point before making a determination.

  3. dan1111 - Aug 13, 2013 at 10:41 AM

    If the Mets don’t win the World Series this year, the decision to shut down Harvey will be the reason why.

    • kevinbnyc - Aug 13, 2013 at 1:12 PM

      They’ll be there for the next decade. Don’t worry.

  4. tbutler704 - Aug 13, 2013 at 11:31 AM

    I love Matt Harvey.

    • fanofevilempire - Aug 13, 2013 at 2:19 PM

      he likes girls.

      • tbutler704 - Aug 13, 2013 at 3:11 PM

        LOL nevertheless…

  5. sabatimus - Aug 13, 2013 at 3:17 PM

    At least the Mets don’t have a pennant race to lose, unlike the Nats last year.

  6. yahmule - Aug 13, 2013 at 11:59 PM

    Harvey has been hanging sliders all night. Probably his roughest outing of the season.

  7. bbk1000 - Aug 14, 2013 at 5:43 AM

    well at least that cap will keep him from falling under .500 for the year….it would be nice if the Mets score some runs for him….

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