Craig Calcaterra

Blogger at NBC Sport.com's HardballTalk. Recovering litigator. Rake. Scoundrel. Notorious Man-About-Town.
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Matt Harvey could start for the Mets on Friday

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The New York Post reports that Matt Harvey is tentatively scheduled to rejoin the Mets’ rotation on Friday in the Mets game against the Astros.

Harvey, 28, has been out since mid-June due to a stress reaction in his right shoulder. He was struggling prior to the injury, posting a 5.25 ERA with a 54/35 K/BB ratio in 70.1 innings.

While some may wonder why the Mets are even bothering to pitch Harvey again given how little time is left in the Mets season, the answer is probably money. Harvey will be eligible for his third and final year of arbitration after this season. He’s being paid $5.125 million this year and, even with the lost 2017 season, his arbitration award would be at least that and possibly higher (it’s very rare for salaries to be cut in arbitration). The Mets are not the sort of team that parts with money easily, so they’re likely wanting to get as much information as possible before deciding whether or not to tender him a contract for 2018.

Harvey’s once incredible promise as a dominant ace is all but a memory at this point. The Mets now have a month to decide whether it’s possible for him to be a solid contributor going forward.