NEW YORK (AP) — More than five weeks after getting the shocking diagnosis of a torn elbow ligament, New York Mets ace Matt Harvey gave in and agreed Friday to have surgery that will sideline him for the entire 2014 season.
The 24-year-old right-hander, the National League starter in the All-Star game at Citi Field, had stubbornly said he could rehabilitate the torn ulnar collateral ligament in his pitching elbow and avoid surgery. But when Harvey met Friday with Mets general manager Sandy Alderson, he agreed to be operated on this month by Dr. James Andrews.
Alderson said that 15 months should be sufficient for Harvey to recover from Tommy John surgery and be ready for spring training in 2015. He estimated 85 to 90 percent of pitchers recover from the operation.
"Perhaps his initial, more emotional response to the injury and his sort of adamant desire to rehab was reconsidered over time," Alderson said. "I think after a period of time he just decided based on all the information that he had that this was a more sort of reasoned approach to the injury. As far as we're concerned, at the team level I think we always assumed that at some point Matt would reach this conclusion. It wasn't an assumption but it was a presumption."
Harvey was diagnosed with a torn ulnar collateral ligament on Aug. 26 by Mets medical director Dr. David Altchek and Andrews concurred when he examined Harvey on Sept. 18.
At the time, Harvey said, "I believe if I can rehab, I'd rather bet on myself doing the work to stay out of getting surgery than having the surgery." The Mets said he did not plan to talk about his decision publicly until after the operation.
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