Interested teams have contacted the Mets to see if they're open to trading Matt Harvey before the start of next season, sources recently told SNY contributor Andy Martino.
However, according to Martino, the Mets are more inclined to keep Harvey, who will enter next year a full season removed from surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome. Also, Martino adds, "They point to a late-season uptick in velocity as another reason for hopefulness," and, "believe he will be especially motivated to work hard to prepare for his last season under team control."
According to Pace University Law School's projections for SNY, Harvey should expect to earn a $5.8 million salary in 2018, after which he will be an unrestricted free agent for the first time in his career.
In September, despite it being possible the Mets could non-tender Harvey and make him a free agent a year early, Sandy Alderson said he expected his former ace to be with the Mets in 2018.
"At this moment, I favor the idea of him being back," Alderson said. "We saw some positive things. The velocity was a little better. He just needs some confidence."
Harvey had a 2.84 ERA after his first four starts in 2017. However, during his next nine starts, he went 3-6, allowed 33 runs in 45 innings, walked 30 and struck out just 37 batters. Harvey then went on the disabled list for more than two months with a stress-related injury to his right shoulder.
Harvey returned to make six starts, during which he allowed 28 runs in 22 1/3 innings to find 5-7 with a 1.694 WHIP for the season. His final 6.70 ERA ended up as the worst ever in franchise history for a pitcher making at least 15 starts in a season.
"This nightmare of a season is over for me," a relieved Harvey told reporters after his final start of 2017. "Throughout this process of coming back from thoracic outlet, it's just been curveball after curveball of different feelings, different strengths. It was something that I tried to push through, some uncomfortable pain, some weakness, and I think I just kind of put myself in a hole throughout the process."
To hear more from Martino, who is covering the GM Meetings this week in Orlando, tune to Mets Hot Stove and Baseball Night in New York this week on SNY at 6 p.m., as well as GEICO SportsNite at 10:30 p.m.