In the series opener match against Colorado, things were going as expected before manager Sandy Alderson attended a news conference. He looked heavily fatigued after an eventful week and as he referred to Harvey, he called him “an appealing, likable and vulnerable individual,” suggesting that he will be missing the player each day.
Alderson said, “I try not to let emotion interfere with decision-making, but empathy is part of making decisions. I like Matt, in spite of all the stuff that’s gone on.”
No matter what he had to say, he was looking quite conflicted in his words and emotions. It is clear that the Mets are nowhere near sad with Harvey’s departure. In fact, the team could have felt some relief after he was gone. Justification of keeping a player who are bowling one flawed pitch after another and becoming too high maintenance for the team was too hard for the team. Even a bullpen refresher course wasn’t going to add much to this team so it was obvious that they were at least relieved to let him go.
Harvey and Met were perfect for each other and the relationship seemed to be going in the right direction. He arrived to the New York team in 2012, embodying the aspirations of every fan in his young pitching style. At one time, he had struck out 11 batters in just 5 1/3 innings in his debut in the major league. Such was the talent of this young lad, that he was the starting pitcher in the 2013 All-Star Game of the National League in Citi Field. Many people compared him with Dwight Gooden and Tom Seaver for his unique pitching ability.
Harvey was the poster boy for New York success. He was giving us great matches every time. In between, he was hanging out on Jimmy Fallon, dating a Russian supermodel and even posing for several coveted sports magazines. Too bad, those days are long past and there hasn’t been a golden moment from the player for quite some time now. The last time he performed well was in the 2015 World Series. The next season, he had several medical problems, including a thoracic outlet syndrome surgery.
Since then, it was a downhill journey for the once favorite pitcher of the New Yorkers. He had very strained relationships with his teammates and even the management. At times, he was immature and on another, he remained completely oblivious of the public opinion. He missed team workouts, tweeted consistently and even suffered a three-game suspension in May last year for breaking team rules. It was always eventful and there was always something. The last nail in the coffin was supplied by multiple injuries. He has had an elbow reconstruction surgery too. Overall, his relationship with his team was so strained that he could have easily affected other players’ performances as well.
The end of the dramatic ties between Harvey and Mets was quiet. There was no one in tears. We didn’t see him emptying his locker. Harvey may still see himself as a free agent but that won’t happen unless he changes his game and his ways.