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Monday, September 17, 2012
Harvey understands shutdown, not thrilled

By Adam Rubin

Matt Harvey's season is about to be cut short because of an innings limit. And like Stephen Strasburg, who had that decision thrust upon him with the Washington Nationals, Harvey understands but is unenthusiastic.

Harvey enters Tuesday's final scheduled start having logged 162 1/3 regular-season innings between the majors and minors this season, already a jump of 26 2/3 innings compared with 2011.

"Everybody works so hard to get here," Harvey said. "To finally get the opportunity to be here, the last thing I want to do is not be able to play and not be able to pitch. At the same time, it's not my decision. I'm going to be fine with whatever they decide. It's their call. I'm going to prepare for the rest of the season like I am still pitching. If they decide differently, I want to be ready."

While many pitchers suffer fatigue from a long season by September, Harvey insists he feels strong despite his workload.

"My body feels great. I'm not feeling any signs of fatigue or wear and tear. Nothing," he said. "I feel better now than I have all year."

Harvey, the offseason after being drafted by the Mets in the first round in 2010 out of the University of North Carolina, went to the offices of his agent, Scott Boras, in Newport Beach, Calif. There, in addition to training, he underwent a tutorial from the agency on how overuse at a young age can be detrimental to a career. So he understands the innings cap.

It was during that visit that Harvey met Braves pitcher Tommy Hanson, another relatively new Boras client at the time. They trained together last offseason in Atlanta. Harvey, a Connecticut native, plans to return to Atlanta this offseason to train. He will throw to Mike Nickeas at Georgia Tech, as will Atlanta-area natives Collin McHugh and Zack Wheeler.

"I worked out with Tommy Hanson quite a bit," Harvey said about last offseason. "We became really good friends and lived in the same building. ... I moved to Atlanta, and we didn't even realize until a week or two later that we were in the same building."