Matt Harvey threw off a mound on Friday for the first time since undergoing Tommy John surgery. He did it at Citi Field and, apparently, things went well. Andy Martino of the Daily News reports, however, that maybe he wasn’t supposed to have done that:
Was Harvey scheduled to take that particular step on Friday? Or was the mound session supposed to wait until Tuesday in Port St. Lucie? Let’s just say that different people at the ballpark had different ideas of the plan, and Mets personnel spent part of the afternoon trying to iron that particular wrinkly shirt.
Martino says that other than confusion it created no problems, but does note that this is part of the deal with Harvey: he’s headstrong and does what he wants. It seems, however, that the Mets are generally cool with it even if it causes them consternation at times. It’s easier to be cool with it when the guy is poised to lead your pitching staff for several years.
Fascinating stuff in a fascinating city for fascinating stuff. The sort of “it’s all cool until the moment it isn’t” dynamic that seems to happen in New York more than anyplace else.
Cubs owner Tom Ricketts met the media in Mesa, Arizona today and said a couple of things that were fun.
First, he addressed the controversy that arose earlier this month when emails of his father’s — family patriarch Joe Ricketts — were leaked, showing him forwarding and approvingly commenting on racist jokes. Ricketts apologized for those serving as a “distraction” for the Cubs which, OK. He also said “Those aren’t the values our family was raised with… I never heard my father say anything remotely racist.” If you choose to believe that a 77-year-old conservative guy who loves racist emails — who once spearheaded an anti-Obama ad campaign that required a “literate African-American” as its spokesman — hasn’t said racist stuff a-plenty, that’s between you and your credulity.
More relevant to the 2019 Cubs is this:
The Cubs aren’t in the same position as some other contenders in that (a) they don’t have a cheap payroll; and (b) are not obvious candidates for the big free agents like Harper or Machado, but I still find that comment pretty rich for an owner of one of baseball’s marquee franchises in a non-salary cap league. If nothing else, it’s an admission by Ricketts that he, like the other owners, consider the Luxury Tax to be a defacto salary cap.