Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Harvey Rocked by Nats

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Harvey Rocked by Nats

Article excerpt

NEW YORK - The chants of "Harvey's better!" that serenaded Matt Harvey three years ago during his last battle at Citi Field with Stephen Strasburg were replaced Thursday with a chorus of boos.

On that April night, this matchup of high-profile starters brought out the best in Harvey, and the hometown faithful rewarded him with that stirring chant.

On this night, Harvey left the game with one out to go in the third, and met his manager several steps off the mound to hand him the ball. The boos then commenced for a starter with a 5.77 ERA.

A starter whose manager believes his confidence is shaken.

"I don't know," Harvey said of his confidence being broken. "At this point, I have no idea."

Harvey's rough season continued as he produced the worst start of his career in the Mets' 9-1 loss to the Nationals. Harvey (3-6) allowed a career-high nine runs (six earned) in a career-low 2 2/3 innings, and the Mets (22-18) lost the rubber game to the Nationals.

Collins did not rule out Harvey being skipped for his next scheduled start Tuesday against Washington, and indicated Harvey may visit a doctor to ensure there are no physical issues.

"We're going to take a look at is that best for him? Is that best for us? We're not going to commit to anything at this time," Collins said of Harvey potentially being skipped. "As I sit here today I'd certainly trust him. I certainly believe in him. ... We'll take a hard look at what the next move is going to be."

Before Harvey put the Mets 2 1/2 games behind the first-place Nationals, Collins said he hoped all the attention and significance of Thursday's start would help Harvey revert to form. Harvey had been 2-0 against Strasburg, including that chant-inducing performance in their first matchup on April 19, 2013.

As Thursday's game unfolded, it made that April night seem much more distant than three years ago.

Collins does not believe Harvey is lacking the arsenal to get hitters out, but he just isn't making the pitches in big counts like he has in the past. …

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