My latest piece for Cincinnati Magazine:

Let’s play a game, shall we? I’m going to show you the stat lines of two MLB pitchers, and you tell me which is the more valuable. Let me remind you: This is only an exhibition. This is not a competition. Please, no wagering.

Starts IP W-L ERA K/9 BB/9
Pitcher A 22 119.2 5-9 6.21 6.54 4.21
Pitcher B 10 53.2 4-3 4.21 6.71 2.01

You may have already guessed, especially if you read the headline above, that Pitcher A is Matt Harvey. You know what? Pitcher B is Matt Harvey as well. It was a trick question! This is a fun game, right?

The top line above shows Harvey’s statistics from 2017 and 2018 as a member of the New York Metropolitans. The bottom line is his performance since coming over to the Reds in the early May trade for catcher Devin Mesoraco.

At the time, the conventional wisdom was that Harvey was a lottery ticket. If he were to show any flashes of his previous brilliance, he might bring more in a trade deadline deal than Mesoraco—a backup catcher in Cincinnati—would have. So far, so good.

Read it all and let me know why the Reds should actually sign Harvey to a long-term contract.

14 Responses

  1. Alex

    Trade him and talk to him over the winter. Its a long shot.

  2. SultanofSwaff

    As much as I like what he’s done, I want more starting pitching options than Matt Harvey. With so much prospect depth to use as trade chips, I’d trade Harvey for the standard relief pitching prospect and then explore additional deadline trades. There’s a handful of SP controlled for 1-2 years with similar peripherals.
    KevinGausman/DylanBundy/KyleGibson/MikeMinor/etc. If you want to go big, you package multiple prospects (outside the top 5) to go after Berrios/Degrom/Urena/Fulmer/etc. Point is, we’re not shopping for a #1, just a rock solid rotation piece.

    Keeping/re-signing Harvey w/o conducting a thorough search is the same logic that landed us Dusty Baker and Bryan Price.

  3. Reaganspad

    I would extend him and Danny Darwin

    Even mentioning Max or Clayton is folly

    The last free agent we signed (the type A ones)?

    Coco Cordero

    I read a comment on this board that we should go after Dallas K.

    We could not sign him to the Reds as a free agent if he was Castelini’s son in law

    • eric3287

      Ironically, if he were Castellini’s son-in-law, he’d be hired as Vice President of Baseball Ops.

  4. Ghettotrout1

    I wouldn’t touch Harvey with a ten foot pole in free agency. I mean unless he signs a super cheap deal. Once pitchers start having surgeries I feel like its all down hill from there. Add in the fact that the dude is almost thirty and had club house issues in the past. No thanks. Trade him and go out and either trade over the winter for pitching or sign some pitchers. Also we need to get Stephenson up here once Harvey is gone so we can see if he can finally string together multiple good outings. You are playing with house money at this point with Harvey cash out while your still ahead.

    • Phil

      The “brain”trust has kept Bailey to replace Harvey. They will get every penny they can out of him. As soon as Harvey is gone Homer is on the bus north. Stephenson can sign another lease in Louisville.

  5. Scott C

    I believe that the point of the Harvey trade was to hope there was improvement and then cash in. To this point (and this really is the exact point in time) Harvey has done exactly that. I really like Harvey, I am a Tar Heel and have followed him since he was a collegian and am happy to have a Tar Heel to root for in the majors, but if the Reds do not trade Harvey before the deadline then they missed their point. I certainly hope that Matt continues on with a successful injury free career but the Reds cannot take that chance with a pitcher who is about to turn thirty and at the price it will cost.

  6. Jeff Reed

    The Reds should stick to the rebuild script and trade Harvey for what they can get. Don’t get detoured to the veteran mode that has happened so often in the past years.

  7. jim ward

    hey chad im also a big reds fan I used to listen to reds games on the radio when I lived in northern va.outside d.c going all the way back to the 70’s and the big red machine days..i live here now in eastern ky . I will be 60 this yr so I been following 4 a long time . things take time they will be back go reds

  8. Westfester

    I agree we should trade him before the deadline. There is no way he will accept a deal that would be less than 3 years, considering he is 30 and this will likely be his last chance to get paid.

  9. roger garrett

    Harvey has done what we hoped he would do so its time to get what we can for him and move on.I expect teams will give us more then any of us think.We can’t afford him nor should even try.I like 10 to 12 mil a year but he will want and probably get much much more from a team with deeper pockets.Average major league starters are bringing a boat load of cash to go 5 or 6 innings in today’s market.

  10. Jack

    Spot on sir! At his age and injuries we cant afford another Homer Bailey.

  11. Ben

    You nailed it. Don’t sign Harvey, definitely trade him before the deadline, and don’t be “sellers” with everyone else, all of whom minus Homer we can bring back next year on reasonable terms.