Skip to content

Before the Matt Harvey blame game begins …

Aug 26, 2013, 4:07 PM EDT

New York Mets starting pitcher Matt Harvey pitches against the Chicago White Sox with a bloody nose during the first inning of their MLB Inter League baseball game at CitiField in New York Reuters

Matt Harvey being shut down with a partially-torn UCL is awful, awful news. I know now the official line is that they will wait and see how it goes, think about rehab over surgery and all of that, but really: when was the last time a pitcher successfully rehabbed a torn-UCL? It seems like they always end up having surgery.

So, as we contemplate being without Matt Harvey for a year — and not to full strength until the beginning of the 2015 season — let’s talk about the blame game. Because you know people will be doing so soon.

Except, I’m struggling to think of who should get blame. We may hear sourced-reports about this later, but I can’t recall anyone with knowledge of Harvey’s health and condition saying that the Mets were mishandling him. Overworking him. Ignoring signs of fatigue.  His workload hasn’t gone up in dramatic fashion from one year to the next (which is part of the somewhat dubious “Verducci Effect” theory). He’s had a handful of outings this season where he began innings after already over 100 pitches and topped 120 a couple of times, but no one ever said that 100 pitches was some magic number. Indeed, smarter thinking these days is that you have to watch pitchers individually for signs of fatigue rather than arbitrarily assigning the same pitch count to a horse like Harvey as you might a slight curveball artist.

No, Harvey getting shut down and likely needing surgery doesn’t appear to be a matter of the Mets abusing Harvey or some awful mechanical flaw. It’s just a matter of pitching living to break your heart. Maybe someday there will be a viable theory that predicts and can help prevent elbow injuries in pitchers, but for now it just feels like chaos and sadness. A chaos and a sadness that seems to have visited Mets pitching prospects in disproportionate fashion over the years.

Latest Posts
  1. Could Billy Beane bust up the A’s?

    Oct 1, 2014, 11:00 AM EDT

    Billy Beane Billy Beane

    The A’s went all-in and busted. Now what will Billy Beane do?

  2. Adam Dunn still plans to retire

    Oct 1, 2014, 9:40 AM EDT

    Adam Dunn AP

    Adam Dunn has no problem with not playing last night. And, apparently, does not plan to play again.

  3. Derek Jeter launches an athlete publishing portal: “The Players’ Tribune”

    Oct 1, 2014, 9:02 AM EDT

    derek jeter getty Getty Images

    He says it will allow athletes a place to talk with “no filter.” In reality, it’s likely to have way, way more filters than what currently exist.

  4. Playoff Reset: The National League Wild Card Game

    Oct 1, 2014, 8:29 AM EDT

    Andrew McCutchen AP

    Bumgarner vs. Volquez is, on paper anyway, something of a mismatch. But as we saw in last night’s game, predicting these things is a fool’s errand.

  5. Bailed out by offense, Ned Yost lives another day

    Oct 1, 2014, 2:02 AM EDT

    Wild Card Game - Oakland Athletics v Kansas City Royals Getty Images

    Yost’s controversial call fails to doom Royals after all.

  6. Video: Salvador Perez walks off Royals in Wild Card Game

    Oct 1, 2014, 1:29 AM EDT

    salvador perez getty Getty Images

    In case you missed it, here is the replay of Salvador Perez’s walkoff hit from Tuesday night’s AL Wild Card Game …

  7. Small ball prevails … in a 9-8 game

    Oct 1, 2014, 1:25 AM EDT

    Wild Card Game - Oakland Athletics v Kansas City Royals Getty Images

    You get a bunt and you get a bunt and you get a bunt!

  8. Royals complete thrilling comeback to defeat A’s in the American League Wild Card Game

    Oct 1, 2014, 1:10 AM EDT

    eric hosmer getty Getty Images

    Salvador Perez was held hitless in his first five at-bats of Tuesday’s American League Wild Card Game at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, but he smacked a walkoff RBI single down the left-field line in the 12th inning to give the Royals a 9-8 victory over the A’s.

  9. Coco Crisp exits Wild Card Game with hamstring injury

    Oct 1, 2014, 12:14 AM EDT

    coco crisp getty Getty Images

    A’s center fielder Coco Crisp was removed from Tuesday night’s American League Wild Card Game before the bottom of the 11th inning with an apparent hamstring injury.

  10. Royals tie AL Wild Card Game in bottom of the ninth

    Sep 30, 2014, 11:49 PM EDT

    jarrod dyson getty Getty Images

    We’ve got a brand new ballgame in Kansas City.

  11. Hyun-Jin Ryu will test his injured left shoulder with a simulated game Wednesday

    Sep 30, 2014, 10:53 PM EDT

    ryu getty Getty Images

    Dodgers left-hander Hyun-Jin Ryu will test his injured shoulder in a simulated game Wednesday. He’s hoping to start Game 3 of the NLDS in St. Louis.

  12. Brandon Moss slugs three-run shot, A’s jump back on top

    Sep 30, 2014, 10:18 PM EDT

    brandon moss getty Getty Images

    Oakland opened the floodgates on the Royals in the sixth inning.

  13. Video: Eric Hosmer hits go-ahead RBI single, Royals lead Athletics in AL Wild Card Game

    Sep 30, 2014, 9:45 PM EDT

    hosmer getty Getty Images

    Watch the host Royals take the lead in Tuesday’s American League Wild Card Game against the visiting A’s on this RBI bloop single from Eric Hosmer in the bottom of the third inning …

  14. Geovany Soto leaves Wild Card game with thumb injury

    Sep 30, 2014, 9:06 PM EDT

    Geovany Soto Athletics AP

    Derek Norris came off the bench to replace him.

  15. Matt Shoemaker throws another bullpen session, has “no doubt” he can pitch in ALDS

    Sep 30, 2014, 8:59 PM EDT

    matt shoemaker getty Getty Images

    Angels starter Matt Shoemaker hasn’t pitched in a game since September 15 due to a left oblique strain, but he is making steady progress behind the scenes and expects to be available for the ALDS.

  16. Braves hitting coach Greg Walker has resigned

    Sep 30, 2014, 8:04 PM EDT

    braves logo

    Braves hitting coach Greg Walker officially stepped down on Tuesday evening, as announced on the club’s Twitter feed.

Featured video

Do Royals or A's have the edge tonight?
Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. D. Jeter (3375)
  2. C. Kershaw (2554)
  3. R. Martin (2463)
  4. A. Rodriguez (2110)
  5. D. Gordon (1962)
  1. J. Altuve (1949)
  2. J. Hamilton (1906)
  3. I. Suzuki (1731)
  4. D. Ortiz (1707)
  5. E. Volquez (1662)