Even when things seem to be looking up for Matt Harvey, he can’t catch a break. Since he gave up five earned runs against the Nationals on May 24 to end a worrying stretch of poor starts, Harvey finally appeared to turn the corner on Memorial Day, when he overpowered the White Sox with seven innings of scoreless, two-hit baseball in front of a Citi Field crowd that was ready to turn the corner with him.
Harvey followed that up with another seven solid innings in his next start against the Marlins, but was charged with the loss. Why? Even after finding his way, the New York Mets lineup has failed to give the Dark Knight adequate run support on almost every occasion. The Mets failed to score a run against Miami in Harvey’s loss, and only squeezed out two against the Brewers on June 10, a game in which Harvey’s six innings of one-run ball and a solid bullpen was good enough. But in two starts against Atlanta since then, the Mets have combined for just four runs. In his latest start, Harvey left the game after six innings with a 3-2 lead before the Mets’ bullpen imploded and Addison Reed gave up a decisive two-run homer to cost Harvey the win.
Since turning his season around, Harvey’s stats have been consistent, though shaky at times. Since his turnaround start against the White Sox, Harvey has posted a stellar 2.25 ERA. But the New York bats have not matched Harvey’s play, only averaging 1.4 runs per game in Harvey’s starts since Memorial Day. Harvey has admitted that he continues to struggle with mechanics and he has had to battle more to get out of innings than in the past. But even though he hasn’t been perfect and has yet to return to his former dominance, it won’t matter when he does as long as there’s no run support.
But the front office is hoping to change that. Opting to finally option Michael Conforto to Triple-A Las Vegas, Brandon Nimmo will make his major-league debut in the field tonight, while former Met Jose Reyes is also scheduled to return to Queens after a stint in the minors. With injuries abound and a lineup that continues to struggle, only time will tell if Harvey will finally be complemented with run support. The Mets scored eight runs last night in a wild win against the Braves, so maybe, better yet hopefully, change is around the corner.
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