New York Mets ace Matt Harvey had a rare poor performance against the Houston Astros on Thursday. Harvey allowed six runs on seven hits over the course of three innings. Harvey also walked four batters while only striking-out two batters. Out of the six runs Harvey allowed, one of the runs was a home run, while the other five runs were off of base hits. The loss brings Harvey’s spring training record to 1-1.
Harvey had pitched two spring games prior to Thursday’s slip up. Harvey earned himself a win in one of those two performances while not earning a win or a loss in the other matchup. Harvey’s spring training ERA is now 6.30, while his ERA last spring training was an incredible 1.19.
Last season, while recovering from Tommy John Surgery, Harvey excelled posting a 2.71 ERA and a 1.02 WHIP on the year. Now that Harvey is even healthier, fans should expect an improvement from Harvey’s stellar season. Many questioned whether the Dark Knight would be able to recover from the surgery, but not only did Harvey recover, he showed he didn’t lose any of his talent sitting out for nearly a year.
Although this is a spring training game, Harvey allowing six runs should come across as a concern for Mets fans. The Astros included minor leaguers in Thursday’s contest, making Harvey’s poor performance just that much worse.
Despite Harvey’s poor performance, his spot as the Mets ace should not be not be in question. Jacob deGrom, Noah Syndergaard, Zack Wheeler, and Steven Matz will definitely give Harvey a run for his money for his ace spot, but as long as Harvey is able to bounce back from this erratic performance and pitch like he did last year, he should retain his position as the Mets ace.
However, DeGrom and Syndergaard are definitely two of the leagues premier pitchers, so in the unlikely scenario Harvey does lose his spot as the Mets ace, it would be to a pitcher on a near level as he.
Harvey will have his next chance to pitch at some point next week. He will be able to show that Thursday’s performance was just a fluke, and that he is still one of the league’s best pitchers. Mets fans should wait and see how Harvey’s next performance goes before raising major concerns for the 2016 regular season.