New York Mets right-hander Matt Harvey had top-of-the-rotation stuff on Thursday night in Arizona, with a plus fastball and slider combination that carved up Arizona Diamondbacks hitters. He was 94-98 mph for five innings with some arm-side run, hard enough to get it by hitters even though the pitch lacks any sink or downhill plane. The slider was toxic at 87-91 mph, a grade-70 pitch pretty much all outing, shorter like a cutter and breaking very late. He threw it down and in to left-handers in lieu of his changeup, which was solid at 87-89 mph with good arm speed but which he barely used.
He was casting his curveball early in the game but did throw several sharper ones, all 83-85 mph and when it was on, it was not only tough to hit but a pitch he could also throw for strikes. I've never seen Harvey throw this hard or with a slider this sharp, so he may have just been amped up for his first big league start, but if this is the 'new' Matt Harvey, Mets fans should be even more excited than they were before.
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