The Yankees should be taking another look at The Dark Knight as he continues to show signs of the dominance that once struck fear in every club’s lineup.
The Yankees, in their search for another starting pitcher, should probably take another closer look at 30-year-old Matt Harvey who is beginning to pitch like a quality starter in Cincinnati after being exiled there by the Mets on May 8.
Harvey is making $5.63 million in 2018 and is set to enter free agency this winter. That would be a cheap rental for Yankees GM Brian Cashman at a little under $3 million for the remainder of this season. It’s safe to say Harvey would not be nearly as expensive as other starters on the market.
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In his last three starts, Harvey has become better each time out. After being bitten by the home run bug in his earlier starts, the former ace has now gone 17.2 innings without giving up the long ball versus three teams that know how to hit it; including the Chicago Cubs and the NL East-leading Atlanta Braves.
Here are Matt Harvey’s stats in his last three starts:
Game IP H R ER HR BB SO
6/26 Braves 6.2 6 1 1 0 1 2
6/21 Cubs 6.0 5 2 2 0 1 6
6/15 Pirates 5.0 4 3 3 0 2 2
After his dominant outing vs. the Braves, Harvey spoke with MLB.com.
"Despite the results, Harvey didn’t feel like he had his best stuff on display according to Mark Sheldon of MLB.com.“We’re on the right path,” said Harvey, who gave up one run and six hits with one walk and two strikeouts on 84 pitches. “It’s nice to help this team win, especially the run we’ve been on the last few weeks. I don’t want to be the weak link in the rotation.”"
Clearly, Matt Harvey has experience pitching in New York. He is not one to wilt under the pressure of big games but rather, had issues with management and clubhouse culture due to nocturnal activities that were responsible for him once missing a start.
Yankees must be sure that The Dark Knight would not be a distraction to the team before considering him as they did with Aroldis Chapman.
"Last season Harvey was suspended by the team, forcing him to miss a start, after he failed to show up for a game at Citi Field. Harvey, who had attempted to call in sick, later acknowledged he had stayed out late the night before."
These issues are the kind that the Yankees would never tolerate and certainly want to avoid. However, if they are convinced that Harvey could actually help the team, they might take a chance on him as they did with Aroldis Chapman when he had domestic violence problems in Cincinnati that reportedly included firing gunshots and choking his girlfriend.
The Yankees have indeed turned Chapman around both to the benefit of the club and the man, himself.
Matt Harvey has always wanted to pitch for the Yankees, and it sounds like he is ready to toe the line to do so. In any case, the former ace is certainly worth a closer look “under the hood” if he continues to throw as he has recently, and if no other contender snatches him up first.