Angels News: Former pitcher on verge of deal with Royals

Matt Harvey, Los Angeles Angels (Photo by Victor Decolongon/Getty Images)
Matt Harvey, Los Angeles Angels (Photo by Victor Decolongon/Getty Images) /

Former Los Angeles Angels pitcher Matt Harvey is reportedly close to signing with the Kansas City Royals.

When we last heard from former Los Angeles Angels pitcher Matt Harvey, he was receiving some interest in revitalizing his career in the Korean Baseball Organization. Well, it appears that he’ll have an opportunity a little closer to home.

Beleaguered by injuries and crippled by the coronavirus, the Kansas City Royals are on the verge of signing the former Mets ace, according to Jon Heyman of MLB Network.

Harvey’s had an up and down career to date. Once tabbed as a future ace, the right-hander fell on hard times during his final years in New York. He was cast out in a trade to the Cincinnati Reds in May 2018 and appeared to have righted the ship, going 7-7 with a 4.50 ERA, a 4.33 FIP,  and a 7.8 K/9 in 128 innings with the Reds.

That was enough to convince the Angels to take a chance on Harvey to fix their own pitching woes. They signed him to a one-year, $11 million deal prior to the 2019 season and it proved to be a costly mistake.

Harvey made 12 starts for the Halos last season, but was rocked to the tune of a 7.09 ERA, a 6.35 FIP, and watched his K/9 plummet to 5.9. Home runs (1.96 HR/9) and hard contact (42.6%) were his ultimate undoing and the Angels released him on July 21st. He would sign with the Oakland Athletics but remained in the minor leagues through the end of the season.

The Royals will presumably add Harvey on a minor league deal, with an immediate invite to join the team’s summer camp. Thus far, they have seen eight players test positive for COVID-19 and recently lost two starters (Jakob Junis and Brad Keller) to the virus-related injured list.

Now 31-years-old, Harvey no longer carries with him the potential of a future ace. However, his past track record will continue to provide him with opportunities to once again be a solid contributor. Whether he can capitalize on this latest chance is up to Harvey and his ability to regain his velocity.

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For the Royals, it is a buy-low option that could pay dividends. At the very least, Harvey provides an able body, which may be all they can ask for at this point.