Terry Collins announced Matt Harvey as the Mets Opening Night starting pitcher this morning. Collins had stated multiple reasons for the decision, which included Harvey’s performance at the end of last season, and questions surrounding deGrom’s availability as his wife is expecting their first child together during the series against Kansas City.
If deGrom is available to pitch, he more than likely will pitch the second game of the season, with Steven Matz possibly also pitching in that game as well, since the Mets will only have 2 games in the first 5 days of the season. Matz is expected to pitch after deGrom during today’s game in Jupiter, which will be something that bears watching. If that lines up correctly, Noah Syndergaard will possibly pitch the home opener against the Phillies on Friday April 8th. Either way with the amount of odd off-days the Mets have, Terry Collins can go in a number of directions with his rotation, the first week of the season.
It is definitely a well-deserved honor for Harvey after he came back strong from Tommy John Surgery last season. Harvey probably wouldn’t want to have his first start of the season come against any other opponent than Kansas City, after how his appearance in Game 5 of the World Series ended. “I think it’s going to be a great atmosphere going to Kansas City and playing against them,” a motivated Harvey stated. “It’s going to bring back a lot of memories, but it’s also going to bring back a lot of fire.”
Harvey pitched 216 innings last season, which was a career high. He pitched to a 13-8 record last season with a 2.71 ERA.