The New York Mets pitcher Matt Harvey has responded to widespread criticism that he would not pitch for his team, should they make the playoffs.
Speculation had grown in recent days that Harvey would not exceed an innings cap set by his doctor following Tommy John surgery. That would have meant he would not play for the Mets if they make the playoffs. Harvey had come in for particular vitriol as he has often portrayed himself as a man willing to do anything for his team.
However, on Sunday Harvey wrote on the Players’ Tribune that he would play for the Mets in the playoffs if called to do so. “As an athlete, when your surgeon explains to you the risks of exceeding a certain number of innings, it can be alarming,” wrote Harvey. “You listen. I love to play baseball and I love winning even more. I would not give that up for anything. I also know I want to be able to play and win for a long time. But there has never been a doubt in my mind: I will pitch in the playoffs. I will be healthy, active and ready to go.”
The Mets looked set for the playoffs at the end of August but have hit in a dip in form, just as their rivals for the NL East – the Washington Nationals – have begun to hit a groove. The Mets currently have a four-game lead in the division but the Nats have won their last five games.
This article was written by Tom Lutz in New York, for theguardian.com on Sunday 6th September 2015 23.51 Europe/Londonguardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010