Matt Harvey hopes to rekindle fire with Angels after disappointing end to Mets tenure

Matt Harvey was disappointed in his final years with the Mets organization.

After starting his career on fire with New York and in the conversation for Cy Young awards, Harvey was traded to the Reds after going 0-2 with a 7.00 ERA in eight appearances with the Mets in 2018.

Just three years before he underwent surgery to relieve symptoms of thoracic outlet syndrome and still wonders if he should have waited longer to come back.

“I was getting to the point that I was just doing more damage to myself and to what I wanted to accomplish,” Harvey told reporters Wednesday, via The Athletic. “I was really just fighting against myself. It was me who was disappointed in what I was not able to bring to the team and to the city of New York at the time. It was me who was beating myself up. That was the tough part.”

Harvey went 7-7 in 24 starts with Cincinnati with a 4.50 ERA and signed a one-year, $11 million contract with the Angels this offseason. He is trying to build on that bit of success he did have toward the end of the 2018 season when he posted three quality starts over his last five outings.

“I think everybody is kind of guilty of having two good starts and then you kind of take a little bit off and you can kind of relax a little bit,” he said. “I think remembering how much it hurt to fail all the time, those two starts that I did have success I worked just as hard as if I was mad from a bad start. … I wish I had someone who told me that when I was 23 years old. Now I can write a book of mine and say, ‘Do more.’”

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The 29-year-old starter will slot into a rotation which features other former top prospects who have had ups and downs in their careers. Harvey has experienced the same things and is trying to take what he learned in the past to be a better pitcher.

“That’s part of the spark and fire you can light and re-light,” Harvey said. “It’s about going out and performing. You can always want to get back to where I was before or pitching in the World Series, but you have to go out and do it. You can think it, but you have to go do it.”

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