Matt Harvey finishes strong, joins elite company before being shut down by Mets

6 Comments

Matt Harvey’s final start of the season was delayed one day by a rain and the Mets rookie tossed seven innings of one-run, one-hit ball against the Phillies last night before being shut down to limit his workload.

Harvey finishes with a 2.73 ERA, .200 opponents’ batting average, and 70/26 K/BB ratio in 59 innings, which along with his at times overpowering raw stuff has to have Mets fans awfully excited.

He also joins some pretty elite company by making double-digit starts and striking out double-digit batters per nine innings as a 23-year-old, which had previously been accomplished by just seven other pitchers in baseball history:

                      YEAR     SO/9
MATT HARVEY           2012     10.6
Stephen Strasburg     2012     11.1
Scott Kazmir          2007     10.4
Mark Prior            2004     10.5
Johan Santana         2002     11.4
Bobby Witt            1987     10.1
Sam McDowell          1966     10.4
Sandy Koufax          1959     10.2

That’s a pretty interesting mix of pitching phenoms.

Counting his work in the minors Harvey threw a total of 169.1 innings this season with 182 strikeouts versus 139 hits allowed. His control still needs plenty of work, but Harvey sure looks like he has ace potential.

Report: Diamondbacks acquire Steven Souza from Rays in part of three-team deal

Tampa Bay Rays
6 Comments

Update (6:35 PM ET): This is a three-team deal also involving the Diamondbacks, per Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic. The Diamondbacks will receive outfielder Steven Souza from the Rays and second baseman Brandon Drury will head to the Yankees. Lefty reliever Anthony Banda will go to the Rays, Piecoro adds. The Diamondbacks will also receive prospect Taylor Widener from the Yankees, per Joel Sherman of the New York Post. MLB.com’s Steve Gilbert adds that the Rays will get two players to be named later from the D-Backs.

Souza, 28, is earning $3.55 million in his first of three years of arbitration eligibility, so the Rays are presumably saving money in moving him. Last season, Souza hit a productive .239/.351/.459 with 30 home runs, 78 RBI, 78 runs scored, and 16 stolen bases in 617 plate appearances. Souza’s arrival almost certainly pushes Yasmany Tomas out of a starting gig.

Drury, 25, has played a handful of positions in his brief major league career. Last year, he played second base in Arizona, batting .267/.317/.447 with 13 home runs and 63 RBI in 480 PA.

Banda, 24, made his major league debut last season, posting an ugly 5.96 ERA with a 25/10 K/BB ratio in 25 2/3 innings. The peripherals suggest he pitched better than his ERA indicated.

Widener, 23, was selected by the Yankees in the 12th round of the 2016 draft. This past season with High-A Tampa, he pitched 119 1/3 innings and posted a 3.39 ERA with a 129/50 K/BB ratio. MLB Pipeline rated Widener as the 14th-best prospect in the Yankees’ system.

*

Robert Murray of FanRag Sports reports that the Rays will acquire second base prospect Nick Solak from the Yankees. The Yankees’ return is presently not known.

Solak, 23, was selected by the Yankees in the second round of the 2016 draft. He spent last season between High-A Tampa and Double-A Trenton, hitting a combined .297/.384/.452 with 12 home runs, 53 RBI, 72 runs scored, and 14 stolen bases.

MLB Pipeline ranked Solak as the eighth-best prospect in the Yankees’ system and the fifth-best second base prospect in baseball, praising him for his ability to hit line drives as well as his speed.