When it was first reported that Dillon Gee was headed to the disabled list with a blood clot in his right shoulder, Mets manager Terry Collins indicated that Miguel Batista would likely take his place in the starting rotation next Wednesday against the Nationals. However, Collins hedged a bit when asked about prospect right-hander Matt Harvey earlier this evening.
“We’re in the hunt,” Collins told Mike Puma of the New York Post. “This isn’t a tryout camp. So if the people who see [Harvey] say he’s ready, bring him up, I’m all for it.”
Chris Young is also a possibility to make the start on regular rest, which means the Mets could delay a decision on Gee’s replacement until July 21. While Collins called Harvey a “remote” possibility to pitch either game, it’s clear that his major league debut isn’t far away.
Harvey was selected No. 7 overall in the 2010 First-Year Player Draft. The 23-year-old right-hander owns a 3.35 ERA over his first 234 innings in pro ball, including a 3.39 ERA and 102/42 K/BB ratio in 98 1/3 innings with Triple-A Buffalo this season. Baseball America recently ranked him as the No. 34 prospect in the game on their midseason list.
Former Red Sox right-hander Nathan Eovaldi is up for grabs this offseason, and Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe says that as many as nine suitors are interested in bringing the righty aboard. While the Red Sox are eager to retain Eovaldi’s services after his lights-out performance during their recent postseason run, they’ll have to contend with the Brewers, Phillies, Braves, White Sox, Padres, Blue Jays, Giants, and Angels — all of whom are reportedly positioned to offer something for the starter this winter.
It wasn’t all smooth sailing for the 28-year-old in 2018, however. After losing his 2017 season to Tommy John surgery, he underwent an additional procedure to remove loose bodies from his right elbow in March and didn’t make his first appearance until the end of May. He was flipped for lefty reliever Jalen Beeks just prior to the trade deadline and finished his season with a combined 6-7 record in 21 starts, a 3.81 ERA, 1.6 BB/9, and 8.2 SO/9 through 111 innings.
Despite his numerous health issues over the last few years, Eovaldi raised his stock in October after becoming a major contributor during the Red Sox’ championship run. He contributed two quality starts in the ALDS and ALCS and returned in Games 1-3 of the World Series with three lights-out performances in relief — including a six-inning effort in the 18-inning marathon that was Game 3.
A frontrunner has yet to emerge for the righty this offseason, but Cafardo points out that the nine teams listed so far might just be the tip of the iceberg. Still, he won’t be the most sought-after starter on the market, as former Diamondbacks southpaw Patrick Corbin is expected to command an even bigger payday following his career-best 6.0-fWAR performance in 2018.