Could the next phase of Matt Harvey's baseball career take him overseas? According to MLB Network's Jon Heyman, clubs in both the Korea Baseball Organization and Japan's Nippon Professional Baseball are eyeing Harvey, who remains an unsigned free agent.
Earlier this week rumors circulated that Harvey, now 31, was hoping to reunite with the New York Mets, though those rumors have since been shot down. MLB.com's Anthony DiComo reports the ship on a possible reunion appears to have sailed. No dice.
Last season Harvey pitched to a 7.09 ERA in 12 starts and 59 2/3 innings with the Angels. He was released in July, then later signed a minor-league contract with the Athletics, and had a 3.18 ERA in five Triple-A appearances with Oakland.
The KBO season is now a month old and the NPB season is scheduled to begin June 19. Both leagues have roster limits on foreign players -- KBO teams can have three foreign players, NPB four -- though teams will use those spots on different players throughout the season.
It should be noted that, should Harvey head to KBO or NPB, he would be subject to a mandatory quarantine period before being allowed to join his team. Even then, he might not be game ready, and would require what amounts to a spring training.
Harvey was a bona fide ace with the Mets early in his career, pitching to 2.53 ERA in 427 innings from 2012-15. He had Tommy John surgery in 2013, however, and surgery to treat thoracic outlet syndrome in 2016. That's often a catastrophic combination.
Since 2016, Harvey owns a 5.65 ERA in exactly 400 innings. He had some success after being traded to the Reds in 2018 (4.50 ERA in 128 innings), but has been largely ineffective since thoracic outlet syndrome surgery.
MLB and the MLBPA are still haggling over salary reductions, and there's unlikely to be a minor-league season this year, so it's likely Harvey is one of several free agents who will look overseas for work.