Matt Harvey was recently designated for assignment by the Mets, should the New York Yankees take a chance on the right-hander?
The Dark Night once ruled over Queens, New York, putting batters away with ease and being hailed the next big thing. A bad attitude and a multitude of surgeries later, and Matt Harvey finds himself DFA’d by the Mets.
It was announced on Friday that Matt Harvey was offered a minor league assignment by the Mets and he turned it down, essentially making himself a free agent. The Mets have 10 days to trade him and if they are unable to do so he will be a free agent and any team can sign him to the prorated league minimum.
There has been a lot of talk as to whether or not the Yankees should take a chance on Harvey. In this article, I will take a look at whether or not the Yankees should do just that.
Let’s start with a little background on Matt Harvey. He was drafted seventh overall by the Mets in the 2010 draft and made his major league debut in 2012. He pitched to a 2.73 ERA in 10 games. His first full season was in 2013 when he pitched to a 2.27 ERA and started the All-Star game at Citi Field for the National League. His season would be cut short due to Tommy John Surgery.
He missed the whole 2014 season and stormed back in 2015, posting an ERA+ of 140, and dominating an infamous World Series game. 2016 was where his career started to go downhill. He posted a 4.86 ERA and had his season cut short due to Thoracic Outlet Syndrome. 2017 brought a 6.70 ERA and 2018 saw a 7.00 ERA and a move to the bullpen.
When talking about signing a player, the first question is whether or not you have a need. So, do the Yankees have a need? The answer is yes. The Yankees need pitching depth and they need it even more, now that Jordan Montgomery will be out two months.
First, let’s talk about why the Yankees should sign Matt Harvey. The answer to this is pedigree. Harvey was a great pitcher. He is a perfect candidate to buy low in and attempt to turn their career back around.
Harvey’s fastball only sits low 90’s now but that it still hard enough to be a successful pitcher. The Yankees have a good reputation of turning pitchers around and Harvey could be a great depth piece for the Bombers this year. It is also worth mentioning that Harvey was a childhood Yankees fan, so he might be excited to play for them.
Now, the bad. As much as Harvey is a buy-low candidate that could be able to turn it around, there are indications that he is far away from being successful. The Mets have stated that it’s more than just a velocity problem with Harvey. They said his mechanics and more are all out of whack.
There is this misconception with Harvey that he is a bad pitcher because of his attitude and off-field issues. I’m sure they have contributed, but let’s not forget he has had Tommy John surgery and Thoracic Outlet Syndrome. A lot of pitchers don’t ever make it back after just one of those, let alone two.
It’s not hard to imagine that Harvey is far away from who he was after all these injuries. Between that and learning how to pitch with lesser stuff, I think Harvey is further away than people think he is.
This wouldn’t be a Matt Harvey article without talking about the extracurricular activities. Harvey has had issues with partying, missing team meetings, not being accountable and so much more. To put it simply he has made poor choice after poor choice and has gained a reputation of being a jerk.
A guy like this is someone who really needs a change of scenery. I personally think he needs out of New York in general. I don’t think that’s an issue if he’s on a minor league deal with the Yankees (assuming he would take one) but if he did make it to New York, what are the chances he still makes poor choices? I don’t have an answer to that, but you have to imagine teams have to be wary of it.
My final verdict on Harvey is a pass. I wouldn’t be outraged if the Yankees signed him but it has already been reported that the Yankees don’t have interest. I think the mix of his off-field issues and the fact that I think he’s further away than people think, makes it a no for me.
I also must say, for Harveys’ sake, I hope he gets out of New York and goes somewhere and gets a fresh start.
If George Steinbrenner was still in charge, there is a huge chance that Harvey ends up in pinstripes. Times change though, and it seems like this time they will and should, pass on Harvey and the big storyline that comes with it.