Well, this is confusing. Matt Harvey has been shut down for the rest of spring training, his status for Opening Day is in doubt, and the Mets aren't saying why. They are saying that he has a non-orthopedic doctor's appointment though, so that's potentially kind of ominous. Or maybe not! We don't know! It's a mystery.
Anyway, Harvey returned from Tommy John surgery last year to headline a fantastic quartet of young Mets pitchers, with a 2.71 ERA and a 3.05 FIP in 189.1 innings, while striking out 188. Even at Citi Field, it was an impressive performance. He was also a stalwart performer in the postseason, winning twice in four starts, with a 3.04 ERA and 27 Ks in 26.2 innings. He's being counted on to build on that to anchor the staff in 2016.
If Harvey is unable to pitch on Opening Day, presumably the honor would fall to Jacob deGrom or Noah Syndergaard to start the new season off right. With three off days in the first five days of the season, the Mets aren't in a bad spot. The earliest they'd need a fifth starter is on April 13. If Harvey's out for longer, Logan Verrett, who worked as a spot starter last year for the Mets, and who has had a decent spring may be in line to join the starting rotation.
In the interim, all of this is super weird. Obviously, we hope that Harvey is healthy and that, whatever this is, it doesn't have long term implications for the young pitcher's career.
UPDATE: Good news, as the mysterious health issue turned out to be relatively minor, and totally hilarious. Harvey has an infection that was causing blood clots to form in his bladder. Harvey reports that the infection was caused by holding in his urine too long. Which...wow. I have so many questions:
Is this a Samson, cutting his hair thing, where he fears he'll lose his power if he pees?
Is he part of some bizarre urine-hording cult?
Is he a germaphobe who can only pee at home?
How was he not taught about this before now?
Should this be part of the Mets' minor league instruction going forward?
Anyway, expect to receive a catheter in your locker tomorrow from helpful teammates, Matt.
The upshot of all of this is that Harvey will not miss any time. He'll throw tomorrow and is still on track to make his Opening Day start, provided he takes an appropriate number of bathroom breaks in the interim.