It’s become old hat by now, but New York Mets ace Matt Harvey had a dominating outing on Sunday against the NL East rival Philadelphia Phillies. Harvey threw six scoreless innings, allowing just two hits and one walk, while striking out six and retiring the final eight batters he faced.
For most pitchers, an outing like this would have been a season highlight, but it was just another day at the office for Harvey. From the first pitch of the game, he was routinely hitting the upper 90s on the radar gun with his fastball. That blistering heater, combined with a devastating curveball, kept the Phillies off-balance at the plate all day long.
The only thing that was able to stop Harvey was a rain delay in the seventh inning. Although the delay was brief, there was no reason to keep Harvey in the game because the Mets had such a comfortable lead at that point.
If his effort on the mound wasn’t enough, Harvey also helped his own cause with the bat. In the fifth inning, Harvey hit an RBI double to right center field, one of three doubles by the Mets in the inning. In his next at-bat, Harvey hit a bullet right back to the mound, which literally took the glove off Philadelphia reliever Joe Savery.
The only thing that made this performance different from Harvey’s other brilliant performances this season was the circumstances around it. In so many of his starts, Harvey has had to save the Mets from getting swept or been forced to put a stop to a long losing streak. But with their win over the Phillies on Friday night, the Mets finally put Harvey in position to give the team a series win and as usual, he came through for them.
With an unusual amount of run support, Harvey won his seventh game of the season, but it was just his second since May 17. In turn, he helped his team get their their sixth win in their last nine games, as the team Mets continue to be refreshingly competitive during their current road trip — a road trip that will continue with the team’s other young ace, Zack Wheeler, on the mound on Tuesday night against the Chicago White Sox.