Matt Harvey looks like NL Cy Young material
When I look at players who have been surprises, the one that jumps out at me the most. I can’t really even say it is that big of a surprise. What Matt Harvey is doing for the Mets is phenomenal! I say it’s not that big of a surprise because of what I saw out of him last year. I said he is the closest thing I’ve seen to Roger Clemens come along. Not just his stuff. But more importantly the way he carries himself on the mound. That is what reminds me most of Clemens. In ’86, having to sit across the field from “Rocket” was so impressive. He had that look on his face that told every hitter, ‘You have no chance.’
That is what I see in Harvey, from his first start last year through three starts this year. This kid doesn’t believe anyone can beat him! It is all over his face. He steps up on the mound and the hitter looks out there and sees a set of eyes that have no question marks in them. He knows what he wants to do, and he does it. He has a fastball that he will throw from 93-98 mph, and above average secondary pitches.
If you go back to last year and look at his stats, they are staggering. He made 10 starts last year and went 3-5 with a 2.73 ERA, also 59.1 IP, 42 hits, 26 walks and 70 strikeouts. His WHIP was 1.15 last year his BAA was 200. Now we jump to this year and three starts into this season he has thrown 22 innings and given up a grand total of 12 base runners, 6 hits and 6 walks. He is 3-0 with an ERA of 0.82. And struck out 25, averaging 7.1 innings per start. He would qualify for Rookie of the Year, but I can tell you this, if he continues to pitch like he is right now he will win the Cy Young Award.
The thing that is most impressive to me about him isn’t his stuff, which by the way is off the charts. It is the way he goes about his business on the mound. Big league hitters will adjust to him and find ways to attack him at the plate. But I see a 24-year-old kid who will make the adjustments right along with the hitters.
I picked Stephen Strasburg to win the NL Cy Young before the season. But I am changing my mind three starts into the season. I truly believe that Harvey is the best pitcher in the NL. He has above average stuff as demonstrated by the six hits he has allowed in his first 22 innings pitched. Most guys would be happy to have a WHIP that is around 1.3; his is .55, and the staggering number is the BAA. The league is hitting .088 against this kid. It is a small sample and only three starts. But I don’t see this guy slowing down. I truly think he is going to win the NL Cy.
They say that Zack Wheeler, another young arm in the Mets system, has better stuff than Harvey. I haven’t seen much of Wheeler, but I can say this for sure, the stuff that really matters, the six or seven inches between the ears, I can’t see any way that Wheeler can be be better than Harvey. There isn’t another pitcher in the game right now that is stronger than Harvey in that area!