NEW YORK -- At some point down the line, Matt Harvey might pitch in a much more meaningful game for the Mets. When that time comes, manager Terry Collins said Sunday, the team could be able to turn its head if its pitching stud feels some discomfort or slight pain.
For now, though, the Mets aren't going to let Harvey pitch through anything.
"We can't risk this guy getting hurt," Collins said. "It would be one of the worst decisions you can make to let this guy go out there, as competitive as he is, and pitch with a possible injury that could not only hurt his back even worse, but have him change his delivery where he could hurt his arm."
So that's why Collins took Harvey out of Saturday's game after Harvey felt some discomfort in his lower back while warming up for the eighth inning. Harvey received treatment immediately, which essentially realigned his hips. He was confident he would make his next start.
Now the Mets are, too.
Collins said Sunday that Harvey is fine, and will be able to start on Thursday against the Cardinals. He said Harvey actually told the team that he wished he had said something earlier in Saturday's game so he could've taken care of the problem between innings and continued to pitch.
Harvey said he woke up Sunday without any pain.
"Everything's normal, everything's fine," Harvey said. "I woke up today and didn't feel anything. We're good to go."
With Harvey pitching Thursday's game, Shaun Marcum will start Friday against the Cubs. Marcum threw eight innings and 105 pitches in relief in Saturday's 20-inning marathon that ended in a 2-1 loss for he Mets.
He actually pitched longer than Harvey did. Harvey went seven innings and threw 93 pitches, so Marcum will get the extra day of rest.
Meanwhile Jeremy Hefner will start Tuesday against St. Louis, while Dillon Gee will be on the mound on Wednesday.
The Mets certainly breathed a sigh of relief that Harvey is good to go.
"I'm ready to go," Harvey said.
Chris Iseman and David Wilson are associate reporters for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.