"I watched it with my coaches and teammates, everyone was just as excited. I was not able to celebrate and be with my family, but I am looking forward heading home to Connecticut and celebrating with family and friends. I am ready for their hugs, love and support."
A first-team All-ACC pick and preseason All-America, Harvey ranks ninth all-time in strikeouts (263) and tenth all-time in wins (22) in Carolina history. The Mystic, Conn., native pitched two complete games this season while registering a career-best eight wins.
"He's a good person, a hard worker, the type of quality person that you look for and the type of talent you look for," said Mets area scout Marlin McPhail. "We're excited to have somebody that's quality on the field and quality off the field."
Harvey joins current major leaguer Daniel Bard (Red Sox), farmhands Andrew Miller (Marlins), Dustin Ackley (Mariners) and Alex White (Indians) as one of five Tar Heels chosen in the first round of the draft since 2006. UNC has now produced 12 first-round picks in school history.
"He's able to bring power, and he's also got that power body," Mets director of amateur scouting Rudy Terrasas said. "I'm very excited that we were able to have Matt there at No. 7 for us."
In 2010, Harvey led the Tar Heels in nearly every statistical pitching category posting 102 strikeouts and a 3.09 ERA in 96 innings pitched. Opponents hit a lowly .224 against the junior, who registered a near 3:1 strikeout-to-walk ratio.
The junior struck out a career-best 15 batters in a complete-game win over Clemson April 23. Harvey caught nine Clemson batters looking at the called third strike as nearly half of his season strikeouts registered were of the looking variety. The powerful right-hander fanned double-digit batters four different times this season, earning ACC Pitcher of the Week twice and National Pitcher of the Week once.
"We are thrilled for Matt," head coach Mike Fox said. "He had a sensational season for us and was one of our team leaders. From his freshman year until now, his development and improvement have been as good any player we have ever had here. He worked very hard to put himself in this position. Matt was determined to have a great junior season and he accomplished that and more. Matt has been a great player and person for our program. We all are very proud of him."
Harvey was chosen by the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in the third round (118th pick) of the 2007 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft, but elected to attend the University of North Carolina.
"I would like to thank the Carolina coaching staff," Harvey said. "Those guys have been with me through it all and have really helped me become the person and player I am today. I really appreciate all the hard work that the coaching staff puts in on the side in developing me as a player and person."