Summoned from his Calistoga, CA vineyard for a comment on Matt Harvey’s season-ending injury, Hall of Famer Tom Seaver tells the New York Daily News’ Bill Madden, “all this babying of pitchers — pitch counts and innings limits — is a bunch of nonsense.” Citing the lengthy careers of such innings-eaters as Juan Marichal, Ferguson Jenkins, Warren Spahn and Steve Carlton, Seaver promises, “most of these pitchers today would like to realize their full potential and pitch more.” If nothing else, that’s great news for Daisuke Matsuzaka.
“These kids today, they want to be men, they want to be foxhole guys, but they’re not being allowed to do that,” Seaver said. “Imagine if these computer geeks who are running baseball now were allowed to run a war? They’d be telling our soldiers: ‘That’s enough. You’ve fired too many bullets from your rifle this week!’ ”
The old “Franchise” was really getting worked up now as he spoke by phone. He acknowledged that in Harvey’s case, the Mets didn’t go overboard in the babying and did let him be “the man” this year, going deep into games. (“They did all the right things with him. It’s nobody’s fault this happened. It just did.”) But he hopes this will not scare the Mets into putting more stringent innings limits on their other top pitching prospects, Noah Syndergaard and Rafael Montero.
“There is no set numerical value you can put on a pitcher,” Seaver said. “They’re all different. What’s important is to get into the pitcher’s head, to know what he’s made of.”