In his first appearance since being traded from New York to Cincinnati, Matt Harvey started on Friday night for the first time in over three weeks. Cincinnati traded catcher Devin Mesoraco and cash to the New York Mets in exchange for Harvey. Harvey lost his spot in the starting rotation with the Mets back in April. With a 7.00 ERA on the season, the Mets designated Harvey for assignment after he refused to sign a minor league contract on May 5, meaning the Mets needed to release him, place him or trade him. New York obviously chose the last option.
With a limited pitch count, Harvey was able to record 12 outs with 55 pitches in a four-inning appearance. 32 of Harvey’s 55 pitches in Friday’s game were strikes. Two of Harvey’s pitches reached 96 mph on the radar gun, giving the right-handed pitcher a feeling of familiarity. Though Harvey said he had not seen that 96 mph fastball in a while, he was glad to know he is still capable of throwing it.
The 29-year-old pitcher only allowed one baserunner during his time on the mound Friday, which was acquired by Dodgers first baseman Cody Bellinger via a triple in the second inning of the game. The fly ball should have been caught, but Reds outfielders Billy Hamilton and Scot Schebler lost track of the ball, resulting in the non-catch. Harvey expressed his excitement to be in a five-man rotation again after experiencing his demotion in New York.
A dominant outing from Harvey is just what the Reds needed from their pitching staff. Cincinnati has now won four games in a row on their first winning streak of the season. Also of note, the Reds are yet to lose a game since acquiring Harvey earlier this week. Harvey will take the mound for his next scheduled start on Wednesday in San Francisco to face the Giants.