Matt Harvey has apparently opted to have season ending surgery to alleviate thoracic outlet syndrome in his right shoulder, according to his agent Scott Boras.
Harvey was placed on the disabled list earlier this week, and it was reported soon after that he was to be evaluated for thoracic outlet syndrome — a compression of nerves and blood vessels in the shoulder area that is often alleviated by the removal of a rib in the patient. Twins right-hander Phil Hughes underwent the same procedure earlier this week, and other recent examples of players to undergo the procedure include Chris Carpenter, Jaime Garcia and Chris Young.
The injury has undoubtedly contributed to Harvey’s down season. The 26-year-old has posted a 4.86 ERA with diminished strikeout (7.4 K/9), walk (2.4 BB/9) and ground-ball (40.8 percent) rates while also seeing a 1.5 mph dip in his fastball velocity. Harvey has reportedly been experiencing numbness in his hand while pitching and, via Newsday’s Marc Carig (on Twitter), told manager Terry Collins following his most recent start (in Collins’ words): “My shoulder’s dead. My arm’s dead. There’s no energy there. I couldn’t feel the ball.”
The loss of Harvey is a big blow to a Mets team already suffering from multiple injuries to their front line starting pitching including bone spurs in the elbows of both Steven Matz and Noah Syndergaard. Additionally, Zach Wheeler’s recovery from Tommy John surgery has been slowed and is without timetable. For now, it appears that Logan Verrett will replace Harvy’s spot in the rotation.