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Royals officially sign Matt Harvey

First Lucas Duda, now this.

Atlanta Braves v New York Mets Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

The Royals are close to signing former Mets starting pitcher Matt Harvey according to multiple reports. Harvey pitched against the Royals in the 2015 World Series, notably giving up a ninth inning lead in the deciding Game Five.

Harvey was once an All-Star with the Mets, putting up a 5.3 WAR season in 2013 and finishing fourth in Cy Young voting. He needed Tommy John surgery and missed the entire 2014 season, but rebounded with a 4.9 WAR season in 2015. In 2016 he needed thoracic outlet syndrome surgery and has not been the same pitcher since. He was traded to the Reds in 2018, then spent just 12 starts with the Angels last year with a 7.09 ERA before they released him in July. He signed a minor league deal with the Athletics, but never reached the big leagues.

Now 31 years old, Harvey did not find much interest on the free agent market this past winter and contemplated playing in Korea. In seven Major League seasons, he has 44 wins with a 4.04 ERA and has been worth 11 WAR, according to Baseball Reference.

The Royals have suffered a blow to their rotation with Brad Keller and Jakob Junis both testing positive for COVID-19 earlier this month. Both players have since tested negative and have rejoined the club but will begin the season on the Injured List to build their workload back up. General Manager Dayton Moore said it could be two or three weeks before either return, and even then they could be limited to working in middle relief. Danny Duffy will start on Opening Day with rookie Brady Singer scheduled to start Saturday. Mike Montgomery is also expected to be in the rotation.

Tuesday update: It’s official.