According to TMZ, former Biogenesis employee Porter Fischer has struck a deal with Major League Baseball in which he will turn over all information he has and Major League Baseball will pay Fischer a “consultant” fee. Major League Baseball is apparently in the process of interviewing him.
Fischer, you may recall, recently described Major League Baseball as “the biggest scumbags on Earth” in an interview with the Miami New Times. There he complained that baseball has using high-handed and hardball tactics in an effort to get Biogenesis information and claimed he was more or less screwed over by the league and by Anthony Bosch and that the whole mess has led to threats to his property and safety. Now things are different, apparently and he, Bosch and MLB are all on the same side.
As I noted in my followup to the Fisher business, this guy comes off as something less than a straightforward, reliable narrator. Maybe he has the goods on some players. Maybe he doesn’t. But based on what he’s said in that interview just two weeks ago, he’s either going to have to (a) testify that his fellow witness-against-the-players Anthony Bosch is an evil duplicitous person who can’t be trusted; or (b) admit that he himself lied in that interview and now, once he’s being paid by MLB, he’s being truthful.
So good luck with that.
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.