Matt Harvey's Mets career officially ends with trade to Reds

It didn’t take the New York Mets long to find a taker for Matt Harvey. Days after the team’s former ace refused a minor league stint and was designated for assignment, Harvey was traded to the Cincinnati Reds on Tuesday for catcher Devin Mesoraco.

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The 29-year-old right-hander posted a 6.00 ERA in four starts for the Mets this season. He bottomed out after being demoted to the bullpen on April 21, allowing seven runs in four relief appearances.

How will Harvey fit in with the Reds?

It’s probably too early to know. But given how much Harvey disliked pitching out of the bullpen, there’s a chance the Reds picked him up to be a starter again. It’s unclear who Harvey would replace in the team’s rotation, though he’ll have plenty of options. The Reds rank 30th in starting pitching fWAR this season. Three members of the rotation, Homer Bailey, Brandon Finnegan and Luis Castillo, have ERAs above 5.50.

17 PHOTOS
Mets pitcher Matt Harvey through the years
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Mets pitcher Matt Harvey through the years
ATLANTA, GA April 19: New York starting pitcher Matt Harvey (33) looks on from the dugout during a game between Atlanta and New York on April 19, 2018 at SunTrust Park in Atlanta, GA. (Photo by Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 22: (NEW YORK DAILIES OUT) Matt Harvey #33 of the New York Mets delivers a pitch against the Colorado Rockies at Citi Field on August 22, 2012 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. The Rockies defeated the Mets 5-2. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 19: (NEW YORK DAILIES OUT) Matt Harvey #33 of the New York Mets in action against the Washington Nationals at Citi Field on April 19, 2012 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. The Mets defeated the Nationals 7-1. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
New York Mets starting pitcher Matt Harvey #33 pitches the first inning with a bloody nose in MLB action against the Chicago White Sox at Citi Field. (Photo By: Mark Bonifacio/NY Daily News via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 24: Matt Harvey #33 of the New York Mets in action against the Detroit Tigers at Citi Field on August 24, 2013 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. The Tigers defeated the Mets 3-0. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 16: Matt Harvey and Anne V attend the Washington Wizards vs New York Knicks game at Madison Square Garden on December 16, 2013 in New York City. (Photo by James Devaney/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 13: (NEW YORK DAILIES OUT) Matt Harvey #33 of the New York Mets looks on before a game against the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium on May 13, 2014 in the Bronx borough of New York City. The Mets defeated the Yankees 12-7. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 09: Starting pitcher Matt Harvey #33 of the New York Mets throws a pitch to a Washington Nationals batter in the fourth inning during a baseball game at Nationals Park on April 9, 2015 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Washington Nationals/Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH, PA - MAY 23: Matt Harvey #33 of the New York Mets pitches in the first inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates during the game at PNC Park on May 23, 2015 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)
Daily News back page August 22, 2015, Headline: Harvey won't make scheduled start Sunday as innings limit looms SKIP HAPPENS - Matt Harvey says he's OK with being skipped Sunday in effort to limit his workload so he can pitch down the stretch in September.(Photo By: /NY Daily News via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 17: (NEW YORK DAILIES OUT) Matt Harvey #33 of the New York Mets in action against the Chicago Cubs during game one of the 2015 MLB National League Championship Series at Citi Field on October 17, 2015 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. The Mets defeated the Cubs 4-2. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
01 NOV 2015: New York Mets starting pitcher Matt Harvey (33) during Game 5 of the 2015 World Series between the New York Mets and the Kansas City Royals played at Citi Field in Flushing,NY. (Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire) (Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire/Corbis via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JULY 04: Pitcher Matt Harvey #33 of the New York Mets walks off the field against the Miami Marlins after the second inning during a game at Citi Field on July 4, 2016 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
ATLANTA, GA - JUNE 09: Matt Harvey #33 of the New York Mets sits in the dugout during the sixth inning against the Atlanta Braves at SunTrust Park on June 9, 2017 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 6: Matt Harvey attends the Tom Ford Men's - Arrivals - February 2018 - New York Fashion Week at Park Avenue Armory on February 6, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by Paul Bruinooge/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 08: Starting pitcher Matt Harvey #33 of the New York Mets throws a pitch against the Washington Nationals in the first inning at Nationals Park on April 8, 2018 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)
MIAMI, FL - APRIL 09: Matt Harvey #33 of the New York Mets looks on in the dugout against the Miami Marlins at Marlins Park on April 9, 2018 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
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How will Mesoraco fit in with the Mets?

The Mets have been searching for a replacement at catcher for a few weeks now, so Mesoraco will get a ton of playing time. That could be dangerous. Mesoraco has a long history of injuries, and hasn’t been used in a full-time role sine 2014. Mesoraco was also set to make $13 million in 2018, so the Mets will receive some cash to offset that cost.

Those injuries have wrecked Mesoraco’s effectiveness. He was an All-Star in 2014, but his production has dropped off in recent seasons. Mesoraco, 29, is hitting .220/.289/.341 in 45 plate appearances in 2018.

Why did Harvey’s relationship fall apart with the Mets?

Harvey’s once promising career has gone into a tailspin over the last three seasons. He was among the game’s most dominant pitchers immediately following his debut in 2012. In 65 starts between 2012-15, he posted a 2.53 ERA. He was a big part of New York’s pennant-winning squad in 2015.

Unfortunately, Harvey was forced to undergo Tommy John surgery in October of 2013. Though he bounced back impressively during the 2015 campaign, he was never quite the same after pitching beyond agent Scott Boras’ preferred innings limit to help New York get deep into the postseason. In the three seasons since, his ERA ballooned to 5.93.

Harvey’s issues haven’t just been limited to the field during his time in New York. His partying ways have made headlines and raised concerns among Mets officials. Four days before the Mets cut ties, the New York Post’s Page Six published a report that Harvey was seen partying in Los Angeles on a Saturday night before the Mets playing in San Diego on Sunday. Mets general manager Sandy Alderson couldn’t even pretend to be surprised by that news.

Does Harvey have anything left in the tank? 

Harvey obviously thinks so. Scott Boras thinks so too. But they’re seemingly in small company.

Harvey hasn’t shown anything this season that would lead anyone to believe he’s currently a major league pitcher. He’s not only determined to prove that thinking wrong, he’s determined to prove he can succeed as a start pitcher. Time will tell if he’s right, but some time out of the spotlight, where he could refuel and reevaluate where he’s at, might have been his best option.

38 PHOTOS
MLB players who will make over $20 million in 2018
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MLB players who will make over $20 million in 2018

35. Kansas City Royals left fielder Alex Gordon

2018 Salary: $20 million

(Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports)

35. Toronto Blue Jays catcher Russell Martin

2018 Salary: $20 million

(Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)

35. Texas Rangers right fielder Shin-Soo Choo

2018 Salary: $20 million

(Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)

35. Toronto Blue Jays Shortstop Troy Tulowitski

2018 Salary: $20 million

(Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images)

31. Chicago White Sox starting pitcher James Shields

2018 Salary: $21 million

(Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)

31. Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Homer Bailey

2018 Salary: $21 million

(Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)

31. San Francisco Giants starting pitcher Johnny Cueto

2018 Salary: $21 million

(Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

31. Kansas City Royals first basemen Eric Hosmer

2018 Salary: $21 million

(Peter G. Aiken-USA TODAY Sports)

30. Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Rick Porcello

2018 Salary: $21,125,000

(Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports)

29. New York Yankees center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury

2018 Salary: $21,142,857

(Photo by Mark Cunningham/MLB Photos via Getty Images)

28. Baltimore Orioles first baseman Chris Davis

2018 Salary: $21,169,326

(Photo by G Fiume/Getty Images)

27. Atlanta Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman

2018 Salary: $21,359,375

(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

26. Los Angeles Dodgers left fielder Matt Kemp

2018 Salary: $21.5 million

(Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports)

24. Colorado Rockies first baseman Ian Desmond

2018 Salary: $22 million

(Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)

24. New York Yankees starting pitcher Masahiro Tanaka

2018 Salary: $22 million

(Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)

23. Washington Nationals pitcher Max Scherzer

2018 Salary: $22,142,857

(Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports)

22. San Francisco Giants catcher Buster Posey

2018 Salary: $22,177,778

(Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports)

21. New York Mets first baseman Adrian Gonzalez

2018 Salary: $22,357,142

(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

20. Texas Rangers starting pitcher Cole Hamels

2018 Salary: $22.5 million

(Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports)

19. Boston Red Sox first baseman Hanley Ramirez

2018 Salary: $22,750,000

(Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports)

17. Toronto Blue Jays third baseman Josh Donaldson

2018 Salary: $23 million

(Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports)

17. Minnesota Twins first baseman Joe Mauer

2018 Salary: $23 million

(Photo by Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/Getty Images)

15. Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Jordan Zimmerman

2018 Salary: $24 million

(Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports)

15. Seattle Mariners second baseman Robinson Cano

2018 Salary: $24 million

(Photo by Lindsey Wasson/Getty Images)

12. Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Yu Darvish

2018 Salary: $25 million

(Photo by Masterpress/Getty Images)

12. Cincinnati Reds first baseman Joey Votto

2018 Salary: $25 million

(Photo by Rob Tringali/Getty Images)

12. New York Yankees right fielder Giancarlo Stanton

2018 Salary: $25 million

(Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports)

11. Seattle Mariners starting pitcher Felix Hernandez

2018 Salary: $25,875,143

(Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports)

10. Chicago Cubs right fielder Jason Heyward

2018 Salary: $26,055,288

(Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)

9. Los Angeles Angels first baseman Albert Pujols

2018 Salary: $27 million

(Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports)

8. Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Jon Lester

2018 Salary: $27.5 million

(Jim Young-USA TODAY Sports)

7. Houston Astros starting pitcher Justin Verlander

2018 Salary: $28 million

(Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports)

6. New York Mets center fielder Yoenis Cespedes

2018 Salary: $29 million

(Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports / Reuters)

4. Boston Red Sox pitcher David Price 

2018 Salary: $30 million

(Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports)

4. Detroit Tigers first baseman Miguel Cabrera

2018 Salary: $30 million

(Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports)

3. Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Zack Greinke

2018 Salary: $31,954,483

(Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports)

2. Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw

2018 Salary: $33,228,939

(Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports)

1. Los Angeles Angels center fielder Mike Trout

2018 Salary: $34,083,333

(Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports)

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