Potent quotables: Sweet Lou turns sour

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”You’re not a player! You’re a piece of sh–!”

– Lou Pinella has had just about enough of Milton Bradley.

“That was awesome. We made him pissed. That’s not too hard to do.”

– Ozzie Guillen throws in his two cents about Friday’s Pinella-Bradley incident.

“I kind of figured that.”

– Ryan Ludwick reacts to being out of the lineup
again on Saturday. On the heels of a breakthrough 2008 season, Ludwick
is batting just .226 so far in 2009, including a .178 mark this month.

“As a pitcher, you know you have a
no-hitter. Whoever says they don’t, it’s a lie. You know you have it.
It was pretty cool to be a part of it.”

– Ricky Romero talks about holding the Phillies hitless
over the first six innings on Friday night. The rookie southpaw’s
no-hit bid was broken up by a Chase Utley leadoff single in the
seventh.

“When I got traded [last] July, it
was a surprise, because I thought I was going to be there until the end
of the season. When that happened, he called me to the office and
wished me the best. He almost cried when he talked to me. For me,
that’s something I’ll never forget. He talked to me as if I was his son
when that happened.”

– Ivan Rodriguez recalls
Jim Leyland’s reaction after the catcher was traded to the Yankees last
season. Rodriguez and Leyland were reunited when the Astros and Tigers
kicked off a weekend series in Houston.

Mets to move Matt Harvey to the bullpen

Matt Harvey
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Mets right-hander Matt Harvey is heading to the bullpen, according to comments made by club manager Mickey Callaway on Saturday. As predicted, Harvey doesn’t appear to be taking the news particularly well, going so far as to tell Callaway that the decision has him “at a 10 with being pissed off” and that he’s motivated to prove himself as a starter.

It’s been rough going for Harvey this spring. After missing significant time to a shoulder injury last season, the 29-year-old righty returned to the mound with a lot left to prove. He pitched to an 0-2 record in four starts, issuing 14 runs, four home runs and 17 strikeouts in 21 innings. It’s been a while since the Mets have seen anything better out of their starter — he hasn’t turned in a sub-4.00 ERA since 2015 and hasn’t pitched well enough to earn an All-Star berth since 2013 — and now it appears they’re at the end of their rope.

At this point, the Mets insist that the shift is a temporary one. While Callaway has helped successfully convert several starters to the bullpen, including Trevor Bauer and Carlos Carrasco, that’s not the plan for this veteran right-hander. Instead, both the team and Harvey seem to view the change as a way to clear up any mental blocks Harvey may be encountering on the mound. “We know he’s healthy,” assistant GM John Ricco told reporters. “He’s feeling good. Then you get to, is this a little bit of a mental thing, a confidence thing? One of the things we talk about is getting him into the ‘pen, where he can have success in short spurts, get that confidence back and really let it go and get back to being a guy who can dominate the way he’s shown in the past.”

Harvey will be eligible to pitch out of the bullpen on Tuesday, when the Mets are scheduled to kick off their next road series against the Cardinals. As for his replacement, left-hander Jason Vargas will resume his role in the rotation when he comes off the disabled list next Saturday.