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Mets vs. White Sox recap: Matt Harvey pitches like Matt Harvey

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After struggling through his first ten starts of the year, Harvey was excellent on Monday.

Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

The Mets would look like a very different team moving forward if Matt Harvey and Jacob deGrom return to pitching like their usual selves, and Harvey did so emphatically yesterday afternoon as the Mets beat the White Sox. He didn’t allow any runs in seven innings, Addison Reed and Jeurys Familia threw a perfect inning apiece, and Neil Walker hit a solo home run in the seventh inning to drive in the only run of the game.

It took a team win for the story to be an entirely positive one, but Harvey would have been a highlight even if the outcome hadn’t wound up going the Mets’ way. He struck out six, walked one, and gave up just two hits in his start. He only got into real trouble in the seventh inning, which he began by issuing that lone walk and giving up one of the two singles he allowed. But he escaped that jam, and he used just 87 pitches to complete seven innings. Brooks had him averaging 96.47 miles per hour with his four-seam fastball—and 91.47 with his slider. Both of those were season highs for Harvey.

On top of the high averages, he maintained his velocity much deeper into his start than he had in previous outings. Here’s the pitch-by-pitch breakdown from Brooks:

If you hadn’t seen Harvey yet this season and only watched him yesterday, you wouldn’t have known he had struggled at all.

That Familia got into the game and pitched like he usually pitches was a great thing, too. He had about as rough a weekend as a relief pitcher could have, but after giving up the decisive runs in the Mets’ loss on Sunday night, he looked just fine yesterday afternoon.

At the plate, the Mets did very little against White Sox starter Jose Quintana, who has pitched very, very well this year. He might not be quite this good, but after four pretty good seasons, it wouldn’t be shocking if the 27-year-old lefty were on his way to a career year. The Mets’ lineup against him didn’t help, of course, as Travis d’Arnaud and Lucas Duda are still very much on the disabled list, David Wright might need to join them because of his neck, and Terry Collins sat both Curtis Granderson and Michael Conforto—and never got them into the game at all.

But the Mets still won, and they’re still just a game back of the Nationals for first place in the National League East.

SB Nation GameThreads

* Amazin' Avenue GameThread
* South Side Sox GameThread

Box scores

* MLB.com
* ESPN

Win Probability Added


(What's WPA?)

Big winners: Matt Harvey, +40.9% WPA, Neil Walker, +23.8% WPA, Jeurys Familia, +14.2% WPA, Addison Reed, +10.9% WPA
Big losers: none
Teh aw3s0mest play: Neil Walker hits a solo home run in the seventh, +22.8% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: Wilmer Flores grounds into a double play to end the fourth, -10.3% WPA
Total pitcher WPA: +66.0% WPA
Total batter WPA: -16.0% WPA
GWRBI!: Neil Walker