New York Mets: Matt Harvey backs up Noah Syndergaard’s hype

Matt Harvey (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
Matt Harvey (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images) /

Noah Syndergaard told people to watch out for Matt Harvey this season and the man formerly known as “The Dark Knight” backed up that endorsement in his 2018 debut for the New York Mets.

“And I gotta say … watch out for Matt Harvey. I really feel like he’s back to his 2013 self in terms of his aggression and his attitude.” That’s what Noah Syndergaard had to say about his fellow New York Mets starting pitcher headed into the 2018 season.

Getting back to his 2013 self is no small feat for Harvey. That year, Harvey went 9-5 with a 2.27 ERA and 0.93 WHIP while striking out 191 batters in 178.1 innings. “The Dark Knight” would finish fourth in the 2013 NL Cy Young voting.

Unfortunately, Harvey would undergo Tommy John surgery that offseason and miss the entire 2014 season. Harvey came back strong in 2015, going 13-8 with a 2.71 ERA and 1.02 WHIP while striking out 188 batters in 189.1 innings, only to have injuries derail his career again. Thoracic outlet syndrome limited Harvey to just 17 starts in 2016 and a fractured scapula limited him to just 18 starts in 2017.

Harvey faced plenty of questions as the 2018 season got underway. Syndergaard and Jacob deGrom were presumed locks at the top of the rotation but what would Harvey (and Steven Matz) provide in the middle of the rotation? Would either be able to stay healthy? Would they produce?

Syndergaard predicting 2013 Harvey certainly brought some extra hype but Harvey lived up to it in his 2018 debut. In five innings of work, Harvey kept the Phillies off the board, surrendering just one hit and one walk while striking out five. Harvey even picked up a hit on the offensive side of things!

This was just one start and if healthy, Harvey will have another 25-30 outings this year, but he’s certainly getting off on the right foot. Harvey will look to build on this start and New York Mets fans should be encouraged moving forward. With Matz looking less than stellar in his 2018 debut, it’s nice to see Harvey dominate like he did on Tuesday.

Next: Mets need all five starters to produce

Will Matt Harvey get back to his 2013 form? Perhaps. Would the Mets be happy if Harvey made 25-30 starts with an ERA around 3.50? Absolutely. After his dominant debut, Harvey looks like he could be a key contributor for the New York Mets in 2018.