Today: Jun 17, 2024

Harvey out: Mets mess continues, future warning to young pitchers?

Pitcher Matt Harvey

Jen HofferSports Writer

Just when the New York Mets think they have a light of hope shining their way, that light gets a little darker.

Ace left-handed pitcher, Matt Harvey, has a partially torn ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow after MRI’s were done.

The injury to Harvey would likely need Tommy John surgery, which would put not only his 2014 season in jeopardy, but possibly his career; all depending on how well he recovers from it.

The 24-year-old right-hander certainly had, and still has, a bright future. But this news about his injury struck the Mets franchise, the fan base, and especially Harvey himself, with heartbreak.

Harvey is not getting down on himself however. He wants to avoid surgery at all means possible and try to pitch through the tear. Ouch. How does he plan on doing that?

Harvey has received medical advice from division rival, Philadelphia Phillies ace pitcher, Roy Hallady who is suffering from a similar injury.

The Mets franchise sought out Halladay to reach out to Harvey to help the young pitcher through this injury.

So for now as Hallady and Harvey communicate, Harvey will have to sit and wait for further information on the tear. Once Harvey and the team have a better idea of what kind of tear they are working with, that will determine whether Harvey will undergo Tommy John surgery or rehab.

Numerous pitchers have undergone Tommy John surgery, one being Halladay. But Major League Baseball have brought many young pitchers into the league and have overused them. The injury records show it.

The nation’s capital buzzed when the Washington Nationals drafted pitcher Steven Strasburg in 2009. He was such a promising pitcher at the time, and certainly had a bright future.

In his fourth year with the Nationals, Strasburg has built a 27-19 record; a winning percentage just over .500, and an earned run average of 2.95.

Pitcher Matt Harvey
Pitcher Matt Harvey

But in 2011, the 23-year-old at the time, was pronounced out for the season with a ulnar collateral tear in his elbow.

Since his debut in the major league’s, the Nationals have monitored the number of inning he pitches. This sometimes gave him a short rest or a long rest between the other starting pitchers.

Not only would this mess with Stasburg’s arm, but it would also mess with him mentally and emotionally.

Go back even further- 2007. The New York Yankees brought in a pitcher by the name of Joba Chamberlain.

Also coming up to pitcher at a major league level at a young age of 22-years-old, Joba was also limited to the amount of innings he pitched. So much so that they turned the starting pitcher into a middle-man relieve. Then back to a starter. Then back to a reliever.

Talk about messing with someone’s head. Chamberlain even said he had to take some time off to go home to Lincoln, Nebraska to clear his head.

Come 2011, to no surprise with the pitching stress Chamberlain was under, not only mentally but physically, he was put on the disabled list. With what? You guessed it — an ulnar collateral tear in the elbow.

There’s some sort of pattern here.

Either manager’s need to start doing a better job at managing their young pitchers and trusting their pitchers that they are physically able to get the job done. Or the question could be raised about if players are being brought up to the major league level too early; their young arms not being quite ready for the competition yet.

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