A day before opening the World Series for the New York Mets on Tuesday, Matt Harvey reflected on the highly scrutinized fiasco that nearly prevented him from achieving his lifelong goal of starting a World Series game.
"The last thing I ever wanted to do is put the ball down," Harvey said, per NJ.com, of his mentality during the saga. "But obviously, I knew as a player and as a person in general that any player in this game wants to play this game for a long time and be healthy. It brought up a concern. As a human being, besides being an athlete, your career and your health is always a natural thing to worry about."
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While the Mets are now focused on defeating the Kansas City Royals, they were once more concerned about snuffing the talk about Harvey's innings limit, which dragged on throughout the latter stages of the regular season as Harvey, his agent, and the Mets front office couldn't come to a consensus as to the limit they had discussed prior to the season for Harvey as he returned from Tommy John surgery.
"I think there was some people that threw me under the bus a little bit about what was going on," the 26-year-old right-hander said. "But for me being out here with my teammates is all I want and I couldn't be happier to be with them here now."
Harvey is well beyond the initially debated 180-inning limit, as he now stands at a collective 202 innings after throwing 12 2/3 innings in his first two postseason starts.
The innings-limit debacle finally came to an end when Harvey expressed his desire to manager Terry Collins to have no limitations while he prepared for the postseason.
"We kind of cleared that up at the end," Collins said. "It goes back to after the Yankee game, we met, we took him right out after five. Pitching great. Couple days later he walked in and said, 'Listen, we're going to get in the postseason and I've got to be ready, and I'm not ready.' He said, 'My next two starts I've got to throw at least a hundred pitches to get myself back where I need to be.' I said, 'Well, we need to address a few things, talk to a few other people.'
"And [general manager] Sandy [Alderson] and I met, and Sandy said, 'It's his call. If he thinks he needs to do that, we'll try to get him ready,' and we did. It's pretty much been Matt and me ever since. I don't think we've needed to go elsewhere. As long as I know he's ready to go."