The LA Angels Sign Former Ace Matt Harvey
By Vincent Page
The LA Angels have been looking for rotation help all offseason, and they finally got some. The club signed former New York Mets ace Matt Harvey on Tuesday afternoon.
While the LA Angels and their fans certainly had higher hopes heading into the 2019 offseason, Matt Harvey is an excellent consolation prize. The deal is reportedly worth $11 million for one year, while it could be worth as much as $14 million with incentives.
Harvey has had a rollercoaster of a career thus far. After a career-defining season in 2013 where he finished 4th in Cy Young voting, the ace started falling off. On-field performance, injuries, and drama off the field surrounded Harvey, and his career was in flux.
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However, he finally got out of the big city spotlight last year when he went to the Cincinnati Reds in the midseason. He finished the season with a 4.94 ERA, but was a much improved pitcher once he arrived in Cincinnati.
For Harvey, it is obvious the spotlight is not for him. While he was dominant in New York for a few years, it ultimately caught up and his off field behavior was holding him back from peak performance. Now, he arrives in Anaheim on a one-year deal. In terms of a nightlife, Anaheim just about matches Cincinnati.
This move is fascinating for the Angels. Obviously, at 29, Harvey still has a lot of years left in the tank, especially in the modern MLB where pitchers like J.A Happ (36) are getting signed to multi-year deals. However, Harvey is not the same pitcher he was during his Cy Young days, but does offer serious upside for the Angels.
With the contract having millions of dollars in incentives, it will only motivate Harvey more. Taylor Blake Ward (@TaylorBlakeWard) also pointed out the value Harvey brings to the Angels. After joining the Reds, Harvey went at least five innings in 79% of his starts, and got to the sixth inning in 37%. For an Angels team that overused their bullpen far too often in 2018, having a solid depth arm like Harvey is a quality move to help out their bullpen and rotation all at once.
Overall, this is not the signing most Halo fans wanted. However, it is the signing teams have to make if they want to contend throughout the season. Hopefully there are more signings (and bigger signings) to come for Billy Eppler and Co.