If there’s one pitching prospect you know entering 2013, it had better be Matt Harvey.
Two-thirds the way through his sophomore season as a pro ball player, Harvey took the mound for the Mets. In his first career start he shut down the Diamondbacks over 5.1 innings, allowing just one earned run on three hits while striking out 11. That’s exactly the kind of pitcher Harvey can be. He has a powerful fastball that clocks in at 94.7 mph on average, and he mixes four different pitches at least 10% of the time.
While Harvey’s 2012 stats are exciting, it’s unlikely that he’ll be able to repeat his 1.15 WHIP. He was the beneficiary of a .262 BABIP last season that severely depressed his OBA, and his 24.5% line-drive rate tells me that BABIP was the luck fueled product of small sample size.
Still, Harvey induced infield flies 15.4% of the time (the league average was 10.0%), and infield flies are a great indicator of how solid/weak the opponent’s contact is. That infield fly rate and Harvey’...