I'm trying to respect the difficult decision facing Matt Harvey, who is 26 on the verge of a potentially healthy, dominant career, but to say I'm disappointed right now would be an understatement.
Harvey had the opportunity Saturday, when talking to reporters, to say he would do whatever is necessary to pitch in October and help his team win and a championship in 2015.
Instead, he deflected all questions and said he was focused only on facing the Nationals on Tuesday.
"Sometimes they don't say the appropriate things at the right time," Terry Collins said after the game about Harvey's words. "It'll certainly be handled in-house, whatever goes on, and we'll make the best decisions moving forward. Right now I'm not sure what's going to happen."
Harvey is being put in the middle of this situation, which ultimately is about his arm, his health and his future earning potential, but also his team's chance to win a ring in 2015. These are "big-boy decisions," as they say, and I want to respect how difficult it must be for him, I really do. But, I also know it's got to be killing him, while killing us, because I just don't believe it's in his DNA to sit on the sidelines in street clothes, while his team may need him on the mound during an important playoff game. He's been so bold in his talk, his demeanor, the way he acts on the mound, all the Batman stuff, to then not step up and pitch. It's not my money, it's not my life, and I respect that he has long-term issues at consider, but he should also be considering the role that his legacy will play in defining his career. And, this is a huge moment in that legacy, there is no question about it...
I understand Harvey is getting hammered online by fans. However, I refuse to judge him until I hear him refuse to pitch... until then, I'm holding out hope he'll do what's best for the Mets, who have done what's best for him every step of the way over the last few years.
"This situation is obviously still evolving," Sandy Alderson told reporters, according to ESPN NY. "Hopefully there will be more clarity by Monday. Ultimately, Matt will decide how long he will pitch this season and any postseason."
It's clear from this comment that Alderson - like Matt's agent, Scott Boras - is putting the final decision squarely on Harvey's shoulders. Alderson says they have a plan to let Harvey pitch in October, but it's up to Matt whether to step on the mound, a place Boras says doctors do not think it's wise for Harvey to be. In the end, though, Boras and the doctors work for Harvey, who is not Steven Strasburg, or Jordan Zimmerman, or anyone else who's had Tommy John surgery. He's Matt Harvey, and he works for the Mets.
The Mets say Alderson will meet with Harvey on Monday in Washington. I assume this is the moment the GM and manager will sit down with Matt to understand his thinking and goals for the rest of the season and get an actual answer about what he wants to do.
In other words, Monday is Matt's Judgement Day. I don't envy his decision, but I can't wait to learn what he decides...