Today Matt Harvey officially joined David Wright on the list of 2016 players to succumb to METS disease. When your star pitcher comes to you and says, “Hey skip I can’t feel my arm anymore. It’s numb,” you know it’s METS disease. He got the TJ surgery. He came back and led the Mets to the 2015 World Series. He blasted through his innings limits and gave the team everything he had. Unfortunately I thought he figuratively gave the Mets everything he had. It turns out he actually went all in physically. As a fan, I will never forget the sacrifice Matty made for this team.
In truth, I don’t know how connected his 2015 innings total is to the thoracic outlet syndrome that is ending his season. I’m sure there’s a genetic component. Obviously it’s also related to the Mets drinking water in the clubhouse. There are many factors in play here. Regardless of what caused it, the syndrome ends Matt’s season. Now he needs to get a surgery that for many pitchers has helped prolong their career (Chris Young, Jaime Garcia) and for others has signaled the end of their career (Chris Carpenter, Josh Beckett). The surgery could involve getting a rib removed. No this isn’t your classic cosmetic/pleasure motivated Marilyn Manson rib removal surgery. They remove the rib because it has been displaced and is affecting blood flow. It’s a serious career threatening procedure. Figures. I hope he comes back healthy and strong, but I’m not getting my hopes up. Much like David Wright and his spinal stenosis, this goes beyond baseball. These guys need to get healthy and worry about the stupid game later.
And so we play on in 2016 without Matt who never really pitched anywhere near his capabilities at any point this season. Can you imagine if he had? We’ll just have to make a run without him. I’m sure we’ll use the internal options at our disposal initially. Seth Lugo, Robert Gsellman, Gabriel Ynoa, Sean Gilmartin, Logan Verrett are all here and ready to contribute. Hopefully Zack Wheeler will be here soon, although yesterday Sandy made it seem like a 2016 return for Zack is no longer a certainty. Greeaaaat.
I don’t know if this means we’ll try and trade for a pitcher. The Pirates are shopping Jon Niese already which is one of the most hilarious things I’ve heard this season. I’d take him back for a sack of potatoes and nothing more. This whole thing really sucks. This is the reason why building your team around young pitching is smart but also risky. You really need a ton of arms to make it work. The only way you survive is with unlimited depth. Pray for Matt. Pray for all the other arms on our team. We need every arm that we have left.