Matt Harvey’s UCL Tear Is Terrible News For New York Mets And MLB

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Matt Harvey was the next big thing to happen the New York Mets and MLB, but now, the future of the Mets might have to be put on hold.

Harvey underwent an MRI that came back showing a partially torn UCL in his right throwing elbow – a part of the elbow that could lead to Tommy John Surgery. For now, the Mets will place Harvey on the DL, give him some time to rest, and then reassess the damages at a later time.

Should the Mets decide that Harvey’s elbow hasn’t improved even the slightest bit, Tommy John Surgery would be left on the table. The Mets are saying that it’s possible Harvey won’t pitch for the rest of the season, and the obvious hope is that everything will heal on its own.

But should things go against Harvey and the Mets, this would be a major blow for the future of the Mets, as well as the league.

On average, a player that undergoes TJ surgery is usually out for at least 12 months and at this point, it would likely keep Harvey off the field for the entire 2014 season.

The Mets have a plan in place that, if all goes accordingly, would put them into position to compete by the 2014 season. The expectation, of course, was to have a starting rotation lead by Harvey and Zack Wheeler, with other top prospects that are expected to be ready at some point in next season.

Losing for Harvey for an entire year would not only damage any hopes of competing, but it would instantly crush the plan that Mets have been putting together, placing a winning season on hold for at least another year.

As for 2013, it’s obvious that this won’t affect the Mets much on the field, considering they’ve been out of playoff contention for just about the entire season. The only thing that will suffer from shutting Harvey down might just be the ticket sales – and a few more lost games in the standings.

And like the Mets, MLB will be losing one of its brightest young stars, a pitcher whose dominance on the mound is matched like no other. At 24-years-old, he’s already started the All-Star Game, and with a stunning 2.39 ERA in his first 237.2 big-league innings, he could have been on his way to the Cy Young award – if only Clayton Kershaw wasn’t so darned good.

Harvey said at his news conference on Monday that his goal was to exceed 200 innings pitched along with 30 starts. For the sake of the Mets and MLB, let’s just hope that nothing blocks him from achieving that goal in 2014 and beyond.

Gavin Ewbank is a Major League Baseball writer for Rant Sports. Follow @GavinEwbank2013 on Twitter.

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