Opinion: Mets are being cautious with Harvey, but pitchers pitch


miniMCavatarMatthew Cerrone: I’m torn on this Matt Harvey situation. If you’re just tuning in, Terry Collins said Wednesday night that he was going to “put his head through the wall,” after learning Harvey threw off a mound earlier in the day (ESPN, Aug. 13).

The way I understand it, while Harvey wasn’t told to ‘stop everything’ by the front office, the two sides touched base earlier Tuesday and left with an understanding that they would revisit his workout and rehab plan, in light of Jeremy Hefner’s recent setback.

“One of the reasons why we have tried to back Matt off is because of how he is mentally,” Collins said late Wednesday. “The guy is a bulldog. There’s no such thing as low-speed.”

It’s totally understandable that Collins would speak out and be frustrated when learning of Harvey continuing on the same path he was on earlier in the week. The thing is, in Harvey’s defense, he’s been cleared to throw by doctors, he has been throwing, and he eventually has to get healthy and return to pitching. It’s what he does. And, if the doctors say it’s fine, well, what else is he supposed to do?


MLB: New York Mets at Miami Marlins


“I think they’re just being super mega cautious,” B/R’s injury expert Will Carroll told me, when I asked if there is any reason to slow Harvey’s progress, simply because a teammate re-injured the same ligament. “Its neither good nor bad since their goal was always to complete the rehab slowly and then give him a full, ‘normal,’ offseason. Maybe they found something in Hefner’s rehab that gave them pause, but there’s no way to know that from out here and I can’t imagine how comparable it would be.”

Look, I can’t apologize for thinking Harvey is awesome. I love that he’s bold, aggressive and focused on being the best player in baseball, all while doing it with a little flash. He can’t get back quickly enough, in my book. Simply put, I miss watching him pitch. It was a great show. At the same time, it would be totally devastating and demoralizing if he injured himself and had to sit out another season. So, I get why it’s natural to want to move slowly and be ‘super mega cautious,’ as Carroll said. However, pitchers pitch. It’s what they do. And, if the doctors say he can pitch, I can’t fault him for that…




92 comments
Michael Leiman
Michael Leiman

What happened to Jeremy Heffner has nothing to do with Harvey's (or anyone else's) rehab. It's silly to change his medically approved regimen unless there was some applicable lesson learned from Heffner. That a rehab, even when properly (to the best of current knowledge) done can go wrong is not a new lesson. There are no guarantees. Does proof exist that if he were to cut back or delay his throwing the chances for a successful rehab would increase? It may seem probable to us but that doesn't make it true. At some point or another Harvey and Parnell and everyone else coming back from TJ will have to cut it loose and throw hard. They should do it based on the best plan that specialists in the area can come up with, based on what's already known. Unless there's a specific reason to link Heffner with Harvey, doing so it just a reflection of how uncomfortable it is to deal with uncertainty.

ardiana
ardiana

Based on the accounts I have read it seems Harvey is a prima donna who believes himself bigger than the team and game.  He has great talent but hasn't even won double digits in a season in his career yet.  Before we coronate him, let's see the beef.  Having written that, I do not like it when any player thinks he's above his team or the game.  If I'm Mets management I'd trade him now and get as many good players as I can get for him.  I know most people will say I'm nuts but if Harvey implodes and becomes the next Hefner or never recaptures the presumed glory he thinks he's earned the Mets will still have nothing.  Once he's proven to be healthy, trade him.  He seems like he'll be a constant issue and the Mets have enough pitching prospects now to afford trading an egotistical player.

Sal
Sal

This organization doesn't deserve Harvey.  They act as if he's the first ego filled star athlete ever to exist.


Other organizations find a way to maximize what they get out of these guys without picking public fights with their stars.  The Mets simply don't get it.


Yeah, Harvey is a primma donna.  So what?  He's also your best player.  Learn how to deal with stars in an industry filled with them.

upstater
upstater

Good job alienating your best pitcher, guys. This is a nice way to make sure that he will look elsewhere when he reaches FA. What's the harm of doing an ingame interview? He's not even active!

nymetfan22
nymetfan22

Love Harvey but he can be a d*ck and will most certainly leave the Mets when he gets the opportunity IMO

Kevin Joseph Patrick
Kevin Joseph Patrick

Listen, I'm a huge Mets fan & I love every player that can help this team. I am also very conservative, politically, however I cannot help but question whether there is a double standard in Major League Baseball. Let's look at two specific players, Carlos Gomez & Yasiel Puig. Gomez & Puig are competitors. These guys love playing what is, for the most part, a kid's game as adults & they are compensated handsomely for it. These two bust their rear ends & have become two of the most exciting, young players in the game today. Regardless, when these guys do things like flip a bat when they hit a HR, stare down a pitcher, talk garbage to opponents, defy management orders, or bunt up 5 in the 8th inning, people jump all over these kids as immature, a disgrace to the game, and unworthy of being role models to young kids who watch them. On the other hand, we have a kid here on the Mets in Matt Harvey who has been praised unabashedly while engaging in behavior that I view as much more problematic than that of Gomez & Puig. Harvey has constantly clashed heads with management; he fought to have his rehab done in NY, against management's wishes, so he can he in the city & act like a privilege little socialite (the whole "team" thing was BS); he has ramped up his recovery despite the wishes of his team; and he has constantly run to the media to complain when he doesn't get his way. To me, Harvey is a young man who is extremely immature & needs to do a lot of growing up to do. Just like the majority of us readers, Harvey has an employer & as an employee, you are supposed to do what your employer says. As a member of a union Harvey has certain rights, but he doesn't have the right to act like a little rich teenager who was told he couldn't drive daddy's Bentley. Bloggers like Cerrone, and real writers like Jon Heyman, have praised Harvey for his "bulldog" mentality, and his competitiveness. While I'll be fair & admit that I haven't seen Cerrone blast Gomez & Puig, I have seen him come out against players who have acted selfishly in the past, such as Carlos Beltran & Jose Reyes, stating that they should put the team first. As far as I'm concerned, Harvey's me-first, team-second behavior is far worse than anything Gomez & Puig have done. He has shown young kids that it is okay to act like the stereotypical spoiled, star athlete. I'm going to tell you right now, if he doesn't cut the crap & start realizing that he plays for the name on the front of the jersey, not the one on the back, he is going to find himself alienating many of his teammates. Professional athletes, especially veterans, don't take kindly to players who put themselves on pedestals above others in the clubhouse. The object of a team sport is to act & play as a team to reach a common goal; when you have a player who has ulterior, personal motives that get in the way of the ultimate team goal, then you have a cancer in the clubhouse. Harvey has said all the right things about wanting to be there with the "guys" but I can guarantee you that he wouldn't have made such a big deal over the rehab location had the Rangers not been in the Stanley Cup Finals.

Now listen, I've made my point very clear on where I stand. I just have a question of why there is this double standard. I can't stand it when people play the race card in situations when trying to explain poor treatment. I feel the race card is a crutch that has been overused in many more situations where it is not applicable than when it is & it has done more to create a racial divide than explain a situation. However, I just can't help but feel that race has something to do with this. More times than not when a Latin player acts in a selfish manner, he is deemed a bad teammate & a clubhouse cancer. When it is a white or black player who acts in a selfish manner, that player is called a bulldog & praised for his competitive fire. If you don't believe me, just look. I honestly feel that if Matt Harvey weren't a privileged white kid from an affluent area in Connecticut, but was a poor Venezualan kid from a ghetto instead, writers & bloggers would be characterizing his behavior in a completely different, more negative manner. This is coming from someone who has been a staunch republican & a strict conservative when it comes to racial matters in America. I feel that affirmative action has become nothing more than reverse racism the past decade; I feel that racial quotas for public service jobs & school admissions are & have always been racist against white people; and I feel that racial profiling is just an affective tool for law enforcement to do their jobs. Nevertheless, when I feel there is something done out of racial bias then I will point it out. I am sure there are many people who will argue against me here & you are entitled to your opinions. I just ask that if you are going to disagree with me that you provide specific examples to the contrary, just as I have done in expressing my point of view. I'm more than open to changing my opinion on this matter, but I am going to need more than just personal belief & conjecture to make that switch.

Tarheel11
Tarheel11

This does not come as a surprise to the Met's. Harvey has always had that top dog, alpha male personality. He believes in his abilities more than anyone else and that's what makes him great but also a pain in the a$$ to his organization. To a degree he is probably always going to be that way. It's part of the package. But this is no surprise to the Met's. Everyone in baseball has known this. He's going to do what he thinks is best regardless of what the organization thinks. 

cleonsvan
cleonsvan

The best part about this is that the Mets found out about his bullpen session because of an interview he gave on ESPN radio after the Mets told him not to give interviews. I love it!

Beth Zatkowsky
Beth Zatkowsky

seeing what happened to @jerehefner33 he shoud take it a nitch dwn b d you all think with boras as an agent hes going to up him. will be etension or stay with mets not sure boras is blah

gangsta
gangsta

This team has zero fire and grit except for Harvey and it all starts with SA and TC. Light a fire under their asses. Give us Wally!!!!!!! 86 Mets were not nice guys but they had swagger and kicked ass!!!!!!

Scrubs
Scrubs

Who's head is going through what wall?  Clarification pls....

gangsta
gangsta

STFU Terry!!!!!!, Are you are a Dr now? Is Hefner Matt Harvey's clone? Go the F away Terry, you and your stupid opinions make me sick!!!!!!! Don't worry about Harvey, he obviously doesn't give a rats ass about what you think and knows you're a short timer and a lightweight !!!! Go put your head and your whole body through a wall, who cares!!!!!!

James
James

Anybody see that Tulowitski is out for the year now, but this kid literally can not go a single year without missing multiple months due to injury.  No way would I trade for this kid at what they would need.

mi
mi

this guy is bolting once he can

theglider
theglider

Why? What is he accomplishing other than drawing attention?

There are 6 months until spring training. They want him to go slow. Why not? Why risk anything? It's foolish for him to do whatever he wants while the organization pays the price is he gets hurt some more.

iamwilpon
iamwilpon

When a qualified doctor tells you it's okay to throw, that's okay. But when ANY doctor associated with the Mets tells you that, I'm sorry, you wait or get an opinion from a doctor that knows what they're doing.

Harvey for Stanton

James T. O'Brien
James T. O'Brien

The Mets have been trying all season to keep a leash on Harvey's desire to get back and pitch in the majors this year.  They are taking advantage of the Hefner debacle to reinforce their position.  Making Harvey wait until Spring isn't going to diminish his self-confidence.  Let the arm fully heal.  Sandy is being smart; Harvey reckless.  The Mets aren't going anywhere next year if Harvey hurts himself coming back too soon.  If he does come back this year, the Mets aren't going anywhere any way.  I completely agree with those who have pointed out that the Mets pay his salary and, as an employee, he has an obligation to do what they say vis-a-vis his recovery.  The stats don't lie.  It takes 12-18 months to fully recover from Tommy John surgery.  Next Spring sounds just fine.


Bob Cooney
Bob Cooney

I believe the Mets are right and should be cautious with Harvey, but what I love about Matt is that he is such a bulldog. I don't want that to be squelched. Which is why I have every confidence he will be back strong in 2015 when it takes most pitchers closer to 2 years to fully recover.

crafalko17
crafalko17

Given the Mets' history with rehabbing pitchers back from injuries, I'd be more likely to follow my personal doctor's than what they think too...

simbad
simbad

What did Adam Wainwright and Stephen Strasburg? They both had the surgery and are both killing it this year. Harvey's built like a tank compared to them.

Bob Giacalone
Bob Giacalone

You get all emotional about this stuff. This is a business. He adds no money this year by coming back early. He doesn't help in the standings. He is a long term chip and payoff. They are protecting that. It's a heartless, emotionless approach. Pitchers may pitch, but you forget--they pay his salary. If your boss says don't pitch and I'll pay you not to pitch, that's what you do. Harvey has a big ego and it's showing here. He's still a nobody, one with talent, but a nobody.

andrewf
andrewf

@ardiana .. What? How does Harvey think he's above the team or the game? This is just another case of the Mets creating bad PR for themselves by badmouthing their players in public instead of working things out in private. 


Harvey has all the goods to be a great pitcher -- perhaps the greatest pitcher the Mets have had since Seaver. And you want us to wait for him to get healthy and show that again, and then trade him? Yes. You are insane. 

Michael Leiman
Michael Leiman

@Kevin Joseph Patrick  Wow, Kevin, great that you put the time and effort into spelling out your views. I agree with you that there is racial or cultural thing going on when so many Hispanic and/or black players are accused of hot dogging. As for Harvey, though, I think you are reading WAY too much into his behavior and I strongly doubt that the players have a problem with it. I have one concern and one concern only, and that is that he's doing his rehab properly. From what I've heard, he is. It's silly to want to slow him down because of what's happened to Jeremy Heffner. There are no guarantees in this rehab and that was true before Heffner's misfortune and after. That one person has a bad outcome doesn't change what those with knowledge view as the right way to handle this. If Harvey has been doing it correctly up until now he should continue to follow whatever is regarded as the best way to proceed. I could care less if he's in New York or Port Lucie, just so long as he can do his work properly and is doing it properly.


We disagree on politics too!

DMA1968
DMA1968

@Kevin Joseph Patrick Heck of a manifesto.  The issue I have with the novel is that Harvey's actions are immature and not happening during a game.  Comparing him to Puig or Gomez who pull nonsense during a game is very very different.  He's just a kid who doesn't see the full scope of what could happen (just like every 20-something year old out there).  Harvey just needs to grow up some.  The minority vs privileged white kid from Connecticut comparison is a reach at best.  If Harvey were Cuban or Dominican, I highly doubt you'd see anything different from the media.  I'm saying that as a minority myself.  The only time you'd hear a complaint from the media is if he was hurting the team in wins/losses.  Then he'd be a clown regardless if he was white/green/yellow or whatever.






elcondor
elcondor

I admit I only read a little of your Post, but I didn't see anything in there about Jonathan Pigskin which would probably refute some of what you wrote

law_dogg
law_dogg

That's sure not written like most conservatives I know. But politics aside, Puig and co. get criticized for **on field** shenanigans, not off field behavior. A better comparison would be Johnny Manziel, who absolutely has taken a TON of heat for off field behavior...and he's one of those "spoiled" rich white kids you allege get kid glove treatment. I don't love Matt Harvey's behavior myself, but you know what? He's butting heads with an organization that has done very little right in 25 years, and which I don't think had earned a heck of a lot of respect or trust from anyone, either. So if Harvey doesn't want to knuckle under to these guys, I guess that's his prerogative ...I just hope he's right. Seaver was a maverick too.

bklyndude
bklyndude

@Kevin Joseph Patrick

You are kind of right.  

When Puig and Gomez showboat and show up the other team,  they put their teammates at risk for getting hit with a pitch. 

When Matt Harvey decides what is best for his own rehab,  he is not putting his teammates at risk.   Also,  the Mets have not proven they know what they heck they are doing when it comes to their medical staff.  

Do the Mets think Matt Harvey doesn't want to heal quicker than any other pitcher before him. Why do the Mets continue to tell media members anything about his rehab,  it only makes them look incompetent. since they don't have any real control over him other than releasing him,  which is not going to happen for obvious reasons.

Kevin Joseph Patrick
Kevin Joseph Patrick

Dude, you know nothing of Wally as a manager. You need to get over the whole '86 Mets crap. Baseball is a completely different world today than it was then. Wally has been managing minor league teams for a long time now & no one has called his number. There are 29 other teams in baseball & there are at least 5-8 managerial openings each offseason, yet none of those teams think Wally is worth it. The only time he got his call was with the D-Backs & he celebrated that by beating his wife senseless. I don't know about you, but I'd rather not have a wife-beater managing the team I love. There's no excuse for hitting a woman, period. As far as I'm concerned, Art Howe could win a AAA championship with the talent Wally has on that team. He was a firey player, but rarely does that translate into a good manager. How has Kurt Gibson done? Robin Ventura? You're the one who wouldn't know baseball if it hit you in the teeth, "gangsta" lol. Get over your fixation with the '86 Mets; it's like Jets fans still dying for a replication of the Namath Jets. We need a manager who has intelligence, patience, and can get the most out of the players. I think TC has done well with the crap he has been given, but I don't think he's the guy to lead them forward. However, given that he has been given crap players the past few years, I feel he deserves at least 1 year with a completely tooled roster. Wally doesn't deserve to jump in just as things are getting good after it was TC who had to deal with the crap.

hankypanky
hankypanky

The '86 Mets had talent to go with the swagger. They had team leaders that put the team first, and they didn't shoot off their mouths contradicting the manager. Nor did they go out of their way to seek out the media. Lastly, they didn't have a foul-mouthed manager as we do in Las Vegas.

cleonsvan
cleonsvan

@borsh13  What happened to Hefner has 0% to do with Harvey. Harvey is following the doctor's plan. It is the Mets who have gone off the path. He needs to get his work in to strengthen the arm.

shinjoooo
shinjoooo

@Scrubs Nice attempt by Matt to make it seem like Collins said he wanted to put Harvey's head through a wall. 

gangsta
gangsta

Matthew Cerrone: I’m torn on this Matt Harvey situation. If you’re just tuning in, Terry Collins said Wednesday night that he was going to “put his head through the wall,” after learning Harvey threw off a mound earlier in the day (ESPN, Aug. 13).

joe21
joe21

And you aren't a Dr. either, so help me understand how your opinion is meaningful in anyway? I don't know what is best, but I feel pretty confident that your rant is idiotic and juvenile

nwmets
nwmets

@theglider He wants to find out how his recovery is going, and he wants to know that he's on track heading into the winter. I'm not sure why this is so hard to understand or why people are vilifying him for it.

Steven M. Harries
Steven M. Harries

I wish. A very young everyday masher who can hit balls outta that stadium like it's Yankee Shopping Mall for a  career12-game winner coming off a major injury... One can only dream. (But then, Lundquist will have to be traded to the panthers.)

dave42
dave42

  DiMaggio for Williams?  That's crazy!  Let's do it.  Oh no, I'm sober now. 

Whiskey Sam McGee
Whiskey Sam McGee

@James T. O'Brien It's not 1974 any more.  Here's what James Andrews who performed the procedure says regarding rehab: "An athlete is allowed to begin the return-to-activity phase of rehabilitation upon achieving full ROM, no pain or tenderness, satisfactory isokinetic strength, and a good clinical examination. An interval throwing program is allowed at 16 weeks. The “off the mound” program requires 6 to 8 weeks to normalize pitching mechanics and to reestablish ball velocity and accuracy. In most cases, throwing from a mound is allowed 6 to 8 weeks following the initiation of an interval throwing program. A return to competitive throwing is expected at approximately 9 months following surgery." http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3445125/

It has been 10 months since surgery.  He is well within the guidelines of the leading authority on this surgery and rehabilitation.  He is not being reckless.

James
James

@simbad Yes, so?  I would argue about Strasburg is "killing it", but they are both healthy, they also had the surgery 3 years ago (Adam 2011 Strasburg 2010).  They both took > 12 (closer to 19) months off while Harvey is trying to get back at 10 months

cleonsvan
cleonsvan

@Bob Giacalone  I'm pretty sure you are the nobody. Harvey has 29 other suitors drooling for his services if the Mets don't like the way he operates.

DMA1968
DMA1968

@Kevin Joseph Patrick I agree that a woman should not be hit but you can't slam someone who wants Backman as a manager by saying he celebrated his Arizona job by beating his wife senseless.  That happened like 3 years before the job.  He lost the Arizona job because they didn't do a routine background check that would have caught that plus other red flags.  


Doesn't feel good getting slammed for being wrong, does it?

gangsta
gangsta

You're a loser and wouldn't know a baseball if it hit you in the teeth, go stick your nose further up Terry's ass

cleonsvan
cleonsvan

@hankypanky  The foul-mouthed manager was one of the 86 leaders who had grit. So your remark makes no sense. The Mets also had a manager with a brain in 86 and gave his stars a lot of rope. Actually Harvey would have been perfect for that team in terms of tenacity and grit.

gangsta
gangsta

I agree with borsh13, let's the Drs do their job and get Harvey on track for next year

scrubs
scrubs

@shinjoooo @Scrubs yes, then I noticed the quotation marks so,  TC  just threatened bodily harm to the (new) Franchise.  Oh boy.....

metsjetsdu
metsjetsdu

@Whiskey Sam McGee @James T. O'Brien Don't let facts get in the way of things here !! People get spoon fed this stuff about Harvey and eat it up and agree with what Terrible Terry has to say. It's unbelievable.  The issue shouldn't be what Harvey did but what our not so bright manager said to the media basically calling out Harvey. It's like this organization is planting seeds early as to why we " won't sign " ( read as can't afford) Harvey when the time comes. 

rico
rico

@James @simbad Strasburg was awful the 1st year back, he's been spotty this year.   No rush on Harvey.



Bob Giacalone
Bob Giacalone

@cleonsvan @Bob Giacalone Funny how dimwits respond to the criticism of another with a personal attack.
I didn't attack you. Obviously, you are either not bright enough to understand that or too hostile to help yourself.

Whiskey Sam McGee
Whiskey Sam McGee

@gangsta If you agree with borsh13 then you disagree with the doctors.  The doctors cleared him to throw.

DMA1968
DMA1968

@Whiskey Sam McGee @gangsta Sorry Whiskey...but considering the history the Mets' team physicians have had, you can't blame people for doubting what they say.  That history is pretty extensive.