HUNTER Luke HARVEY
Image of
Nickname:   N/A Position:   RHP
Home: N/A Team:   NATIONALS
Height: 6' 3" Bats:   R
Weight: 210 Throws:   R
DOB: 12/9/1994 Agent: N/A
Uniform #: 73  
Birth City: Catawba, NC
Draft: Orioles #1 - 2013 - Out of high school (NC)
YR LEA TEAM SAL(K) G IP H SO BB GS CG SHO SV W L OBA ERA
2013 NYP ABERDEEN   3 12 11 15 4 3 0 0 0 0 1   2.25
2013 GCL GCL-Orioles   5 13.1 10 18 2 5 0 0 0 0 0   1.35
2014 SAL DELMARVA   17 87.2 66 106 33 17 0 0 0 7 5   3.18
2015 - D.L.                            
2016 NYP ABERDEEN   3 7.2 9 7 6 3 0 0 0 0 1   3.52
2016 GCL GCL-Orioles   2 5 3 11 0 2 0 0 0 0 0   0.00
2017 GCL GCL-Orioles   3 5 6 6 0 3 0 0 0 0 0   0.00
2017 SAL DELMARVA   3 8.2 4 14 3 3 0 0 0 0 1   2.08
2017 NYP ABERDEEN   2 5 1 10 3 2 0 0 0 0 0   0.00
2018 EL BOWIE   9 32.1 36 30 9 9 0 0 0 1 2   5.57
2019 EL ERIE   1 3 0 4 1 0 0 0 0 0 0   0.00
2019 IL NORFOLK   12 16.2 13 22 5 0 0 0 0 1 1   4.32
2019 EL BOWIE   14 59 63 61 21 11 0 0 1 2 5   5.19
2019 AL ORIOLES   7 6.1 3 11 4 0 0 0 0 1 0 0.136 1.42
2020 AL ORIOLES $209.00 10 8.2 8 6 2 0 0 0 0 0 2 0.242 4.15
2021 TAE NORFOLK   8 10 19 7 2 1 0 0 0 2 1 0.396  
2021 AL ORIOLES   9 9 8 6 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.242 4.15
2022 GCL FCL   2 2 0 4 0 2 0 0 0 0 0   0.00
2022 IL ROCHESTER   4 3.2 3 4 2 0 0 0 0 0 0   0.00
2022 NL NATIONALS   38 39.1 33 45 12 0 0 0 0 2 1 0.234 2.52
2023 NL NATIONALS $870.00 57 60.2 44 67 13 0 0 0 10 4 4 0.203 2.82
2024 NL NATIONALS   33 36 30 41 8 0 0 0 0 2 2 0.222 2.75
Personal
  • Hunter's father is Bryan Harvey, who spent nine years in the big leagues with the Angels and Marlins. He compiled a career record of 17-25, 2.49 and collected 177 saves. For all pitchers since integration with as many career innings as Harvey (387), only three have a better career ERA: Mariano Rivera, Billy Wagner and Jonathan Papelbon.

    And Hunter has an older brother, Kris, who was a fifth-round pick out of high school as a catcher and a second-round pick out of Clemson as an outfielder by the Marlins in 2005, but has since converted to the mound as well and is currently in Double-A Altoona, in the Pirates' organization.

  • Possibly because of his father's background, Harvey is a bit of a throwback. He's one of the rare players in today's amateur baseball scene who doesn't play on a summer travel team. He plays for his high school and then stays around and plays on a team with his friends in the summer.

    "That's all my doing," Bryan Harvey said. "I played Legion ball and Kristopher played Legion ball. Not that that's the right way, it's nothing against travel ball. But it's close to home, playing with his buddies and he enjoys it.

    "Those travel teams play a lot and for the hitters, it's not a bad thing. But somebody's got to pitch up all those innings and you're talking about playing a couple games on Saturday and a couple games on Sunday. That can be a little bit of a grind. A lot of people choose that way and that's okay, but we just didn't."

  • June 2013: The Orioles chose Hunter in the first round, out of Bandys High School in Catawba, North Carolina. The Orioles agreed to terms with Hunter for $1,947,600; he signed with scout Chris Gale.
  • Hunter was named a starter for the 2012 Under Armour All-America Game, played at Wrigley Field, in which he tossed three scoreless innings.

  • In nine seasons with the California Angels and Florida Marlins, Bryan Harvey recorded 177 saves. He had a league-best 46 in 1991, when he was named the American League's best reliever. And he twice played in the All-Star Game (1991 and 1993).

    Although the young Harvey never got to see him pitch, his father's influence extends beyond pitching mechanics.

    "He told me what he had to do to succeed—all the working out and all that," Hunter said. "But he said one thing I had to get over was failure. The guys that can handle failure will be the ones who succeed. That's definitely been the hardest part for me."

    "He's taught me everything I need to know about the game and about being a man. Where I'm at today, I owe it all to him." (Brittany Ghiroli / MLB.com / 6-06/13)

  • In 2014, the Baseball America Prospect Handbook rated Harvey as the 4th-best prospect in the Orioles' organization. Hunter moved up to 2nd-best in the system (behind Dylan Bundy) in both 2015 and 2016.

    He was at #4 before both the 2017 and the 2018 season. And he was at #7 in the spring of 2019, dropping to #8 in the winter before 2020 spring training. He was at #13 in the spring of 2021.

  • Orioles manager Buck Showalter watched video of Harvey and had a big grin on his face when asked about the 19-year-old from Bandys High in Catawba, N.C. The skipper is impressed by Harvey’s stuff and mound presence, and sees him moving quickly.

    “He’s matured physically and gotten a lot stronger since last year,” Delmarva pitching coach Alan Mills said.

    Hunter got stronger during the offseason in the Orioles strength and conditioning program.

  • Too young to remember his dad as a pro, life on the road was something that the Catawba, N.C. native experienced as a 12-year-old.

    “(I never got any experience around) big-league clubhouses, but my dad [was a pitching coach] in the minor leagues for two years,” remembers Harvey. “The first year, (2007 with Asheville), I stayed with him for a month, rode the bus, and got to do everything he did.” (Rob Marsiglio)

  • 2017 season:  After finishing his rehab from Tommy John surgery, Harvey started making his first professional appearances in July for the Gulf Coast League Orioles. After three scoreless appearances in which he struck out six and walked zero over five innings, Harvey got the bump up to Aberdeen. He didn’t last long there either.

    After a scoreless run in the Gulf Coast League, Harvey kept it going up in Harford County. He made two appearances for the IronBirds over five more scoreless innings. In Aberdeen, Hunter allowed one hit, walked three, and struck out 10. It was good enough for another promotion to Delmarva where he finished out the year.

    In his third and final start for Delmarva, Harvey finally allowed two runs in what turned out to be his last inning pitched in 2017. In total between three levels, Harvey allowed two runs over 18.2 innings for a tidy ERA of 0.96. Most impressively, Harvey struck out 30 and walked just six.

    After spending so much time away from baseball, Harvey took seemingly no time getting back to controlling his mid-90’s fastball. He was dominating Class A hitters once again. (George Batters-SBNation- Sep 25, 2017)

  • MLB debut (August 17, 2019):   Hunter was hoping the call would come, but he didn’t think it would happen in mid-August. Around 10:30 p.m., the Orioles informed Harvey he was being promoted from Triple-A Norfolk for Saturday night’s game against the Red Sox. He didn’t think he’d be called up until September.

    “When I got that phone call last night, I was kind of blown away,” Harvey said. “I was like, ‘This is crazy.’”

    Harvey made his Major League debut in the bottom of the eighth inning and faced the middle of the Red Sox order in the Orioles’ 4-0 loss. Harvey retired J.D. Martinez on a groundout before issuing a walk to Andrew Benintendi and striking out Christian Vázquez and Mitch Moreland to end the scoreless inning.

    “After I got that first pitch out of the way, it was just so much easier to breathe,” Harvey said.

    Harvey threw 21 pitches, targeting 14 for strikes. His fastball reached 99.6 mph, according to Statcast. Orioles manager Brandon Hyde was impressed by Harvey’s six-pitch strikeout of Vazquez. Harvey will remember facing an All-Star in Martinez in his first at-bat.

    “It’s obviously electric stuff. That was really fun to watch,” Hyde said, adding, “Hunter Harvey’s one of those guys where it’s going to be really fun to watch him come out of the bullpen. You can see a bright future there.”

    Harvey’s debut was a long time coming for the 22nd overall pick in the 2013 MLB Draft and a former Top 100 prospect. He was stalled by injury problems early in his Minor League career, as he missed all of '15 with an elbow ailment and ultimately underwent Tommy John surgery in '16. Harvey then dealt with a shoulder injury last season and threw just 32 1/3 innings, posting a 5.57 ERA for Double-A Bowie. Given everything he has gone through, Harvey’s debut was a can’t-miss for those who have watched him strive to achieve this goal. Harvey’s father, former Major League pitcher Bryan Harvey, drove 12 hours through the middle of the night from North Carolina to Boston.

    “That was like a snowball rolling down a hill,” Bryan said of his son’s past struggles. “After he got sent down out of Spring Training in '15, it was one thing after another. He’s battled through everything. Last year was a freak thing. There’s been a couple freak things in this. Everything that could go wrong, went wrong. He’s battled back. He never gave up, and he worked his butt off to get here. It’s happy now.”

    Saturday was a special night for father and son, who had similarities between their debuts. Bryan made his first big league appearance on May 16, 1987, as a member of the Angels against none other than the Orioles. Like his son, Bryan also pitched in the final inning of the game, facing Cal Ripken, Eddie Murray, Fred Lynn and Ray Knight.“My heart was about to beat out of my chest [watching Hunter], but it was really fun and it was awesome,” Bryan said.

    This actually isn't Harvey's first appearance on the O's 25-man roster, as he was called up for a brief stint last season but didn't appear in a game. “Oh, it’s amazing,” Harvey said of being healthy. “I’ve been trying to say that for the last couple of years. I thought I had it last year, and then something crazy happened.”

    After recording a 6.12 ERA in his first 11 starts this year, Harvey was moved to the bullpen, where he has enjoyed better results. Over 15 relief outings leading up to Saturday's promotion, Harvey had a 2.81 ERA with 33 strikeouts and seven walks in 25 2/3 innings between Bowie and Norfolk.

    “I was hoping that he could stay a starter, but he just struggled in that role,” Bryan said. “This year, he’d have a good outing, a bad outing. When he went to the bullpen after his first outing, he called and said, ‘Dad, my mind was so much freer tonight.’ I said, ‘That’s what we’ve been looking for all year.’ He said, ‘Well as a starter, I’m trying to figure out how to go seven, eight innings. Now, I just go throw it. It’s working."

    Harvey, the club's No. 15 prospect according to MLB Pipeline, takes the roster spot of right-hander Tom Eshelman, who was optioned to Norfolk following Friday's contest. “Everything that’s led me up to this point, all the injuries and all the negative stuff that I had in my past, just to be able to overcome that and finally reach my dream has been awesome,” Harvey said. (Jessica Camerato is a reporter/editor for MLB.com)

  • 2019 Season: Hunter began his first full season as an Orioles reliever. Harvey struck out 11 hitters across six innings, touched 100 mph a few times, and gave up one earned run on three hits. 

    VIDEO GAME PALS

  • An Unlikely Friendship.  Although Ryan Mountcastle and Hunter cannot officially agree on the details of their first meeting, it is believed to be during Spring Training of 2017.  “I knew him obviously when we drafted him, and then I faced him a couple of times in Spring Training, but he never got a hit,” Harvey explained.

    “No, I got a triple. I faced him one time,” Mountcastle interjected.

    It was not friendship at first sight, though.  “When I first saw him, I was scared to even talk to Hunter,” said Mountcastle.  “I’m like man, this guy is scary looking, and I knew he was a legit high pick, so I thought ‘I’m probably never going to talk to this guy in my life, no chance’.  Then I finally got to meet him, and the rest is history,” he continued.

    The duo really hit it off during Spring Training of 2018, when they roomed together and continued as roommates while playing for the Bowie Baysox throughout the 2018 season.  That season, they bonded over their shared passion for video games.

    “That’s really how it all got started.  It started with a game called Fortnite that we played all the time.  Then we got too old to play Fortnite, so we started playing Call of Duty, and we’ve been playing that ever since,” explained Mountcastle.

    Harvey added, “It’s our routine, we did it every day for a couple of years.  We play a lot, but we slowed down quite a bit.”

    When it comes to others joining the two in video games, that’s a tough bond to crack.  “Cedric (Mullins) will play with us too.  You’ve got to be pretty good to get in our Call of Duty squad,” said Mountcastle.

    Not everyone is a fan of their video game habit they say, as Hunter’s fiancée Summer, and Ryan’s girlfriend, Taylor, don’t like video games at all.  The ladies also had a significant say on the boy’s living arrangements for the 2021 season, their second full year together in Baltimore, putting an end to their history as roommates.  “We got separated, unfortunately,” Mountcastle stated.

    “It wasn’t my choice,” added Harvey.  “We were going to live together again, but his girlfriend and my fiancée are here all year, so they felt like we should get our own places.”

    Harvey and Mountcastle compromised by renting apartments in the same building, strategically chosen so they can still play video games together on an off day.  Summer and Taylor don’t always agree with that.  “I think they get annoyed at us.  They tell us all the time that we act happier with each other than with them,” Harvey joked.  “They’re jealous of our friendship,” Mountcastle laughed.

    Though the four of them are very close and would love to all take a trip together now that it is safer to do so, but according to Mountcastle, there is no time because Harvey is always going hunting.  “I’ve tried to get him to come hunting with me but he’s not a big morning guy,” Harvey explained.  “I don’t think I could ever (go hunting),” said Mountcastle.  (Kaplan - Birdland Insider - 7/9/2021)

  • An Unlikely Friendship, part 2.  Mountcastle is a night owl, which made for an interesting exchange when he got the phone call that he would be called up to the Major League roster for the first time.  Living together at the time, Mountcastle received the most important phone call of his career on August 21, 2020, almost one year to the day that Harvey received that same call (August 17, 2019).

    “He was the first person to know.  I walked into his room freaking out,” Mountcastle recalled excitedly.

    “He woke me up,” Harvey complained.

    Mountcastle laughed, “Yeah, I woke him up and I said, ‘Dude I’m going to the big leagues!’”

    But Harvey thought it was a joke.  “It was like eight o’clock in the morning.  He is never up that early, this dude sleeps until noon every day.”

    It took a few minutes, but once Harvey woke up and realized what was happening, he finally believed it.  Harvey grew up with an older brother who played baseball, so it was nice for him to have that proud older brother feeling, himself.  But when it comes to baseball overall, the two really don’t converse much.  Harvey said, “We really don’t ever talk about baseball, we never have baseball conversations.”

    “Only if we’re in desperate need of advice if we’re going through some stuff,” Mountcastle responded.

    “Well, I can’t hit and he can’t pitch so there’s not a whole lot of advice I can give him,” added Harvey.

    “I don’t take advice from him either,” Mountcastle explained.

    “I like to just do stuff on my own, figure it out by myself and go day-by-day.”  Harvey interrupted, “I don’t listen to him a whole lot.  When he talks, it just goes in one ear and out the other.”

    In the clubhouse, Harvey and Mountcastle’s lockers are conveniently located right next to each other.  “It keeps him from walking around the locker room to find me now,” Harvey laughed.  (Kaplan - Birdland Insider - 7/9/2021)

  • An Unlikely Friendship, part 3.  “Ryan and I have this dart game on our phones, so we like to sit in our lockers and play darts against each other,” Hunter said.

    They might be inseparable before and after games, but on the field, they keep their distance from one another.  “During the game, he’s dead serious and I’m sort of the opposite.  I’m always loose and joking around,” Mountcastle explained.

    Due to COVID-19 protocols, Harvey and Mountcastle are not able to ride on the same bus together during road trips, but Mountcastle made sure to move his seat on the airplane to sit with his best friend.  Mountcastle explained, “I was in the back of the plane, and he was towards the middle, so I switched seats with somebody.”

    Unbeknownst to Harvey, there may have been an ulterior motive, as it is also well known that Harvey is afraid of flying.  “It’s not fun for me,” Harvey said.  “Every time we take off Ryan sits there and video tapes me, so when I get off the plane everybody is texting me that Ryan sent them a video of me freaking out on the plane.”

    “The last flight we were on, Hunter researched how long it takes for the plane to get off the runway.  He said, ‘there’s no way we get off, we’re going right in the water’,” Mountcastle exclaimed.  “It was a shorter runway!  I was just getting my facts right,” responded Harvey.

    Though they both have brothers by blood, they certainly act like brothers in their own way.  “He makes me proud,” Harvey said of Mountcastle’s success during his rookie year.

    Outside of baseball, the duo enjoy their Starbucks runs together and their endless casual banter over random topics.  “Hunter actually likes my rap music that I play.  He won’t admit it, but he’ll listen to it in the car when I’m not around,” Mountcastle explained.  “Well, everybody likes country music except him,” Harvey complained.

    It’s never a dull moment between the two friends.  “You’re not really funny,” said Harvey.  Mountcastle continued, “I’m really funny.”

    “Debatable,” Harvey responded. “He thinks he’s funny.”  Despite their differences, the two share one of the greatest friendships – no matter how unlikely it might seem.  “To an extent we’re like exact opposites, but somehow it clicks,” said Harvey.    (Kaplan - Birdland Insider - 7/9/2021)

  • If he records a save, he and his dad, Bryan, will become just the ninth father-son duo in MLB history to record saves. Something to root for. In addition, Harvey and his brother, Kris, own a company called “Deceit” that sells attractants and cover scent sprays for hunting. Hunter hunts. (Nesbitt - Apr 25, 2023 - The Athletic)

  • Sept 3, 2023: The resemblance was undoubted. Side-by-side photos of an adult Hunter Harvey and his father, Bryan -- both donning a Major League uniform with a glove on their left hand and a baseball in their right -- on the Nationals social media recently prompted a double take.

    “A lot of people say that we look a lot alike,” Hunter Harvey said. “Obviously, when they posted that, just seeing that, it’s kind of surreal. It’s cool. It’s a cool feeling.”

    Harvey, 28, has been linked to his father’s acclaimed nine-year Major League career while he forges his own path in the bigs. The Nats’ late-inning reliever, who has 10 saves this season, is following in the family footsteps.

    Bryan was the 1991 AL Rolaids Relief Award winner and a two-time All-Star while playing for the Angels and Marlins. Not only was he a member of the inaugural Marlins in ‘93, he also earned their first save in their first win. That season, Bryan accumulated 45 saves and garnered his second All-Star selection, along with Cy Young Award votes and MVP votes.When Harvey earned his first career save in Miami last Friday, the accomplishment was special to him on several levels.  “They had the 30th anniversary baseball, so I kept it,” Harvey said.

    The Marlins’ throwback uniforms also provided a visual reminder of the final three seasons of his father’s playing career.

    “When they wore those jerseys the night I got the save, obviously that was the jersey he was wearing when he got his first save as a Marlin,” Harvey said. “That was kind of cool. It kind of brought it back a little bit because I have a bunch of his old jerseys.” (J Camerato - MLB.com - Sept 3, 2023)

  • June 16, 2024: The phone rings on game days before and after the Nationals take the field. Hunter Harvey knows he can count on the calls for preparation and postgame analysis. They come from essentially his personal pitching coach -- his father.

    “It’s awesome knowing someone’s got your back like that,” Harvey said
    .

    Nearly 30 years after Bryan Harvey concluded his nine-season Major League career, the two-time All-Star and 1991 Rolaids Relief Pitcher of the Year is still just as invested in the game as when he played
    . Only now, it is on a more personal level, watching eagerly each time his 29-year-old son Hunter works out of the back end of the Nats’ bullpen.

    “I would talk to my dad after I pitched, and he would say, ‘I walked a hole in the floor last night
    .’ I said, ‘What are you nervous about? I’m not nervous,’” Bryan recounted. “Now I know.

    Kris Harvey was the first of Bryan’s sons to get drafted, first in the fifth round of the 2002 MLB Draft by the Braves and then in the second round of the 2005 Draft by the Marlins
    .

    Eight years later, Hunter was selected in the first round by the Orioles
    . Following a long road of injuries, Hunter debuted with Baltimore on Aug. 17, 2019, in Boston. That day, Bryan said, “My heart was about to beat out of my chest [watching Hunter], but it was really fun and it was awesome.
     
    That sentiment hasn’t changed
    .

    “If I was pitching, it didn’t matter if he was at home or here [at the ballpark], he could not sit still,” Hunter said
    . “My debut, they said he got up and walked around Fenway while I was pitching. He was a nervous wreck. He’s getting a little bit better, but I don’t know if it will ever go away.

  • Over the past three years, Hunter has found dominance as a late-inning arm for the Nationals. He leads all relievers with 21 holds, and he has a 2-2 record and a 2.75 ERA in 33 relief appearances (36 innings) this season.

    “As soon as Hunter comes in, you’re wanting everything to go so good, you’re wishing you could actually do something,” said Bryan, who keeps his own superstitions when Hunter pitches
    . “But you have to just sit there and watch and trust that everything he’s been taught, he’s able to execute. And most of the time he does.
     
     Bryan and Kris have worked with Hunter to stay grounded on his back foot and stay on his back leg longer, which has helped his mechanics and consistency
    .

    “It’s been fun to watch Hunter grow,” Bryan said
    . “I can remember when he was drafted by Baltimore and he went to Spring Training the first year, you could find him with ease because he looked like a toothpick among everybody else. He probably weighed 175 pounds and now he’s [233], and he’s just matured and he’s paid attention to the game.

  • Hunter etched his family in the history of the game, too, last season. When he earned his first save on May 7, 2023, at Arizona, he and Bryan became the ninth father-son combo in the Major Leagues to record a save. Hunter gifted Bryan the game ball.

    “I’m very proud of that,” Bryan said
    . “I don’t think people understand how hard it is to play in the big leagues.
      
    Hunter reached the milestone wearing the vintage Flexall shirt from 1993 that Bryan wore for the majority of his saves
    . Bryan had given it to him on a trip home during the 2022 All-Star break after finding it in the back of his closet.

    “It was really hot because it was the old-school cotton shirts, so day games were not fun in it
    . But it was cool just wearing something that he had so much success in,” said Hunter. “I had to cut the sleeves off because they didn’t fit, it was a little small … It just started getting too nasty and started ripping at the seams, so I just said, ‘I think we’ll frame this.’ We’ll hang this up in the man cave or something.

  • Hunter escaped a bases-loaded, full-count jam by striking out Tim Anderson swinging to end the top of the eighth. He earned the hold and set up close friend Kyle Finnegan for the save. A postgame phone call was sure to follow.

    “He’ll always have the breakdown of what I did good, what I did bad, what I’ve got to do better,” Hunter said
    . “It’s nonstop. It’s always baseball, baseball. It’s a blessing and a curse, I call it (laughs), but it’s good to have.” (J Camerato - MLB.com - June 16, 2024)



    TRANSACTIONS

  • June 2013: The Orioles chose Hunter in the first round (#22 overall), out of Bandys High School in Catawba, North Carolina.

  • Nov 5, 2021: The Giants claimed Harvey off waivers from the Orioles.

  • March 21, 2022: The Nationals claimed Harvey off waivers from the Giants.

  • Jan 13, 2023: The Nats and Harvey avoided arbitration agreeing to a one-year contract worth $870,000 guaranteed.
  • Jan 11, 2024: The Nats agreed to a one-year deal with Hunter avoiding arbitration.
Pitching
  • Harvey has a 93-100 mph FASTBALL with good downhill angle to either side of the plate, earning a 70 grade. He has a sharp 84-85 mph 2-plane CURVEBALL that is still a bit inconsistent, but often flashes plus (a 60). And he has a 79-82 mph sinking SPLITTER that is a 55.

    There is some effort in Hunter's cross-body delivery. It limits his control to average/50 grade. (Spring, 2021)

  • 2019 Season Pitch Usage: 4-seam Fastball 69.6% of the time, his Change 15.6%; and Curve 14.8% of the time. Average velocity: 4-seam 98.6 mph, Changeup 89.9, and Curve 83.6 mph.

  • 2020 Season Pitch Usage: 4-seam Fastball 77.2% of the time, his Change 8.3%; and Curve 14.5% of the time. Average velocity: 4-seam 97.7 mph, Changeup 90.8, and Curve 83.6 mph.

  • Hunter has a good, clean delivery and arm action but he sometimes throws across his body, which may have led to his injured forearm in 2014, with Tommy John following in 2016. His normally smooth mechanics allow him to keep his velocity until late in games.

  • In 2013, Aberdeen IronBirds manager Matt Merullo described him as “intimidating, not intimidated.”

    Hunter displays poise and impressive mound presence and has a competitive fire.

    "When he gets on the mound, he can get mad with the best of them, and I mean that in a good way. He doesn’t like to get beat—he likes to compete," Merullo said of Harvey's mound demeanor.

    "He’s sure of himself and has a confidence that is rare for a kid his age. You know some of that comes from his dad. He’s very composed and poised on the mound.” 

  • Hunter's impressive mound presence and composure, along with his high pitching IQ make Harvey a top of the rotation starter (#2 or #3).

  • With his tall, slender 6-foot-3, 175-pound frame, Harvey has always had a good arm. His strength and velocity were attractive to scouts in high school. He also throws a sharp-breaking curveball and a changeup that continues to improve. His curve is in the 82-mph range with deception coming from his downhill motion. His changeup offers additional speed differential, as he usually sits at 77 mph with that pitch.

    Harvey has the repertoire, the mechanics, the mound presence and the command to become a highly qualified Major League starting pitcher. He throws strikes and takes charge on the mound. He has the ability to repeat his simple, uncomplicated delivery and not waste energy with extraneous movement. He uses his size to his advantage, as he comes over the top and gets late life on all his pitches. Even at the young age of 19, Harvey has the ability to keep the ball down in the strike zone.

    Continued development of his changeup will help against left-handed hitters and give him another pitch to keep hitters off balance. If he perfects each of his three pitches, they will be enough of an arsenal for him to continue to succeed.

    Since he's still so young, Harvey may gain strength in his upper body and core to deliver even more velocity more frequently. It's possible that if he gains more strength and throws even harder, he could lose some of his outstanding command and control, but Harvey is smart enough to keep his pitches within his comfort level.

    However, the right-hander's deep knowledge of pitching and natural baseball instincts could be one of his most dangerous qualities of all and would be a great addition to the Orioles' rotation one day. (Pleskoff - mlb.com - 7/28/14)

  • In six pro seasons (entering the 2019 campaign), Hunter's career has been totally derailed by injuries. It includes elbow soreness in 2014, a fractured leg in 2015 and groin surgery in 2016 before Tommy John surgery later that summer. He returned in 2017 and after flirting with the majors in spring training, made nine starts for Double-A Bowie before going down with a shoulder injury.

    The Orioles constantly point to another injury-beset top pick—Dylan Bundy—in not discounting Harvey’s promise to be a No. 3 starter. If he can’t hold up, he has an electric high-leverage relief arsenal. (Jon Meoli - Baseball America Prospect Handbook - Spring, 2019)

  • Aug 17, 2019: Hunter was hoping the call would come, but he didn’t think it would happen in mid-August.

    On the night before, the Orioles informed Harvey he was being promoted from Triple-A Norfolk for the game against the Red Sox. He didn’t think he’d be called up until September.

    “When I got that phone call, I was kind of blown away,” Harvey said. “I was like, ‘This is crazy.’” “After I got that first pitch out of the way, it was just so much easier to breathe,” Harvey said.

    Harvey made his Major League debut in the bottom of the eighth inning and faced the middle of the Red Sox order in the Orioles’ 4-0 loss. Harvey retired J.D. Martinez on a groundout before issuing a walk to Andrew Benintendi and striking out Christian Vázquez and Mitch Moreland to end the scoreless inning. Harvey threw 21 pitches, targeting 14 for strikes. His fastball reached 99.6 mph, according to Statcast. Orioles manager Brandon Hyde was impressed by Harvey’s six-pitch strikeout of Vazquez. Harvey will remember facing an All-Star in Martinez in his first at-bat.

    “It’s obviously electric stuff. That was really fun to watch,” Hyde said, adding, “Hunter Harvey’s one of those guys where it’s going to be really fun to watch him come out of the bullpen. You can see a bright future there.”

    Harvey’s debut was a long time coming for the 22nd overall pick in the 2013 MLB Draft and a former Top 100 prospect. He was stalled by injury problems early in his Minor League career, as he missed all of '15 with an elbow ailment and ultimately underwent Tommy John surgery in 2016. Harvey then dealt with a shoulder injury last season and threw just 32 1/3 innings, posting a 5.57 ERA for Double-A Bowie. Given everything he has gone through, Harvey’s debut was a can’t-miss for those who have watched him strive to achieve this goal. Harvey’s father, former Major League pitcher Bryan Harvey, drove 12 hours through the middle of the night from North Carolina to Boston.

    “That was like a snowball rolling down a hill,” Bryan said of his son’s past struggles. “After he got sent down out of Spring Training in 2015, it was one thing after another. He’s battled through everything. Last year was a freak thing. There’s been a couple freak things in this. Everything that could go wrong, went wrong. He’s battled back. He never gave up, and he worked his butt off to get here. It’s happy now.”

    Saturday was a special night for father and son, who had similarities between their debuts. Bryan made his first big league appearance on May 16, 1987, as a member of the Angels against none other than the Orioles. Like his son, Bryan also pitched in the final inning of the game, facing Cal Ripken, Eddie Murray, Fred Lynn and Ray Knight.

    “My heart was about to beat out of my chest [watching Hunter], but it was really fun and it was awesome,” Bryan said.

    This actually isn't Harvey's first appearance on the O's 25-man roster, as he was called up for a brief stint last season but didn't appear in a game.

    “Oh, it’s amazing,” Harvey said of being healthy. “I’ve been trying to say that for the last couple of years. I thought I had it last year, and then something crazy happened.”

    After recording a 6.12 ERA in his first 11 starts this year, Harvey was moved to the bullpen, where he has enjoyed better results. Over 15 relief outings leading up to Saturday's promotion, Harvey had a 2.81 ERA with 33 strikeouts and seven walks in 25 2/3 innings between Bowie and Norfolk.

    “I was hoping that he could stay a starter, but he just struggled in that role,” Bryan said. “This year, he’d have a good outing, a bad outing. When he went to the bullpen after his first outing, he called and said, ‘Dad, my mind was so much freer tonight.’ I said, ‘That’s what we’ve been looking for all year.’ He said, ‘Well as a starter, I’m trying to figure out how to go seven, eight innings. Now, I just go throw it. It’s working.

    “Everything that’s led me up to this point, all the injuries and all the negative stuff that I had in my past, just to be able to overcome that and finally reach my dream has been awesome,” Harvey said. (J Camerato - MLB.com - Aug 17, 2019)

  • Aug 20, 2019: It took Hunter six years, multiple arm injuries, and a whole lot of waiting to crack the Orioles’ Major League roster. It took him just a few days to emerge as one of the club’s higher-leverage relievers. That was clear by the eighth inning of the 4-1 win over the Royals, when Orioles manager Brandon Hyde called upon Harvey to preserve a 1-1 tie in his second big league appearance.

    His fastball eclipsing 99 mph several times per Statcast, Harvey breezed through a 1-2-3 inning in impressive fashion, dazzling in his Camden Yards debut to set up Baltimore’s game-winning rally -- capped off by Hanser Alberto's three-run home run -- in the bottom of the frame. The victory snapped the Orioles’ eight-game losing streak.

    Harvey won a 10-pitch battle with Nicky Lopez before fanning Whit Merrifield and Jorge Soler. Merrifield went down swinging on a wicked slider below the zone and Soler struck out looking on a 99.8-mph heater on the outer black.

  • April 10, 2020: If searching for their future closer, the Orioles might not need to look any further than their current roster. He has a mustache, a mullet, and some serious closing genes.

    We’re talking about Harvey, who appeared poised to become a key part of the O's late-inning plans before baseball was halted due to the coronavirus pandemic. Baltimore's front office had been continuously noncommittal regarding Harvey’s short-term role, but it’s no secret how dominant they think he could be as a back-end reliever after the former top starting prospect took off following a midseason shift to the bullpen last summer.

    Not only did Harvey stay healthy, he flourished, striking out 11 and pitching to a 1.42 ERA during an electric seven-game late-season MLB debut. A small sample? Yes. But in it, Harvey flashed the weapons of an elite late-inning arm: a near triple-digit fastball, a power curve, a swing-and-miss splitter and a willingness to pitch in high-pressure situations. He largely resembled his father, Bryan, the two-time All-Star from the early 1990s. (J Trezza - MLB.com - April 10, 2020)

  • Feb 19, 2021: Harvey arrived at Orioles camp this week much like he did in previous years: rocking the same shoulder-length mullet (beloved on social media), full of the same late-inning potential and lugging around the same pressing injury concerns. They’ll follow the hard-throwing right-hander until he proves otherwise. He knows it and is ready to put them to bed.

    “I think every season’s important, but once again, going into it, my main goal is the health thing, trying to stay healthy,” Harvey said. “It’s by far been the biggest thing for me and been battling injuries for eight years, ever since I got drafted by the Orioles. So it’s a huge season, I have to stay healthy and that’s what we’re shooting for.” To that end, Harvey said he doubled his typical amount of offseason throwing this winter at home in North Carolina, with an eye toward building arm strength and increased durability. He also met occasionally in person with O’s assistant coach Darren Holmes, a fellow North Carolina resident, for personalized instruction focused on mechanics and pitch design. This was after Harvey followed up his tantalizing late-season 2019 debut by throwing just 8 2/3 innings during the shortened 2020 season, limited by several weeks spent on the injured list with right elbow stiffness.

    “I was really just trying to build my arm up and get the body used to possibly taking the ball back-to-back days—or two on, one off—and come back for another,” Harvey said. “Really just trying to prepare for that and be ready for any role they throw at me.” (J Trezza - MLB.com - Feb 19, 2021)

  • 2020-21 Seasons: Oblique and shoulder problems limited Harvey to 19 games between 2020 and 2021. In the Minors, he missed two full years and parts of three others to elbow and shoulder woes.

  • 2022 Season: Hunter Harvey adopted a new mindset that led to him thriving out of the Nationals’ bullpen in 2022.

    “My mentality this year is, I'm not trying to strike people out,” Harvey said late in the season.

    Wait, not trying to strike out hitters? But the 27-year-old right-hander had the best season of his career. That’s because instead of focusing on the number of punchouts recorded, Harvey focused on the number of pitches thrown.

    “I’m thinking four or less pitches to every hitter,” Harvey said.

  • The approach was suggested to Harvey years ago by his father and bullpen veteran, Bryan Harvey. The fellow righty saw its implementation lead to his first All-Star selection and the 1991 Rolaids Relief Pitcher of the Year Award.

    “It kind of took off for him,” Harvey said. “I’ve been trying to burn that into my mind mentally -- stop trying to make every pitch the best strikeout pitch and let them hit it, let them put it in play, let them see what they can do.”

    Harvey attempted to put his father’s plan in motion when he transitioned from a starting pitcher in the Minors, but a series of injuries made it challenging to establish consistency. He pitched only 23 2/3 innings his first three years in the Majors.

    “In the past, like even the Minor Leagues, when I went up, I was like, ‘Alright, I'm striking this guy for sure. I want to punch him out. That's what I want to do,’” Harvey said. “But it always seemed to me, I’d throw way more pitches than normal. … For me, it’s all about just being relaxed and not trying to do too much. In the past, I’ve had that problem of trying to make everything too good -- and it makes it worse.”

    This season, Harvey overcame an early IL stint to toss a career-high 39 1/3 innings. He rejoined the ‘pen on July 13 to become one of the Nationals’ most reliable arms. From his return on, a healthy Harvey threw 617 pitches to 148 batters for an average of 4.17 pitches per batter faced.J Camerato - MLB.com - Nov 15, 2022)

  • 2023 Season: Potentially the most intriguing of this bunch is Harvey. He was not initially Davey Martinez's pick to be the closer to start the 2023 season, however, after Finnegan's struggles, he became the closer in the middle of May and he stayed in that role until a right elbow strain sent him to the injury list for a month.

    Harvey later returned from the injury list and all in all, had a great season. Harvey led the Nationals' bullpen in: fWAR, ERA, xERA, FIP and xFIP. Not to mention, his K-BB ratio was the best by a considerable margin as well.

    Hunter Harvey also was way better than Finnegan in medium and high leverage situations, where Hunter has a 22.1% strikeouts to walks difference, and a .271 wOBA against, compared to Kyle who posted a 9.4% K-BB% and a .321 wOBA against opposing hitters. Overall, Hunter Harvey's 23% K-BB% ranked 11th among the National League relievers in the past season. He was one of five relievers in the National League to be at least in the 80th percentile for K% (84th) and BB% (89th). In save situations, you will always feel more confident sending to the mound the pitcher with the best control numbers and being a elite power pitcher makes Harvey more dominant, thus, less dependent on the defense.

    The Philadelphia Phillies' Gregory Soto (98.8 MPH) was the only reliever in the National League with a better four seam fastball velocity average than Hunter Harvey. He used his heater 10% less compared to 2022, mainly because this season he introduced a slider that helped him to be more deceptive, alongside his plus change up and his curveball. He has a larger repertoire than years past and knows how to use it. His .252 wOBA against opposing hitters ranked him in the top 4% in MLB, way below the .270 league average.

    Another perk of having Harvey as the closer is using Finnegan in lower leverage situations, where he has been way better than when he is pitching in medium or high leverage scenarios. (Arving Gonzalez | Oct 8, 2023)

Fielding
  • Hunter needs to improve at holding runners on base.
Career Injury Report
  • July 31, 2014: Harvey was on the D.L. after an MRI on his right elbow revealed a strained flexor mass muscle. Surgery had not been seriously considered. Instead, the Orioles let him rest.

    Baltimore said that the prized righthander has sustained no damage to his elbow ligament, but then Dylan Bundy’s elbow injury was initially diagnosed with a flexor mass strain as well before he succumbed to Tommy John surgery.

  • March 22, 2015: Harvey was out with a slight/hairline fracture of his right fibula. Harvey had a CT scan on the area after X-rays came back negative. He was hit by a comebacker in a Minor League spring game.

    And he was later diagnosed with a strained right flexor mass, the same injury that forced him to be shut down in July 2014. He received a platelet-rich plasma injection from Dr. James Andrews and was expected to be out for six weeks. But it was longer.

    Hunter was pitching in extended spring training while recovering from a slight fracture in his fibula when he felt tightness in his elbow. He was removed from the game after two innings and sent to Baltimore for an MRI. He received a platelet-rich plasma injection May 18, 2015.

  • September 19, 2015: Harvey was shut down again with right elbow discomfort and is slated to be re-evaluated by noted orthopedic surgeon Dr. James Andrews. Orioles Manager Buck Showalter noted that there's a level of concern within the organization regarding Harvey, who felt something on the first day he was cleared to throw in the team's instructional league.

    "Any time a guy has had that much time off and done the rehab and everything and there's discomfort, that's an issue," Showalter said of Harvey, 

  • April 30, 2016: Harvey, the O's No. 1 prospect, has been shut down and will see a specialist as he continues to be bothered by a groin injury.

    Harvey first experienced the issue in late March and the O's were extremely cautious in bringing him back to ensure he wouldn't reinjure himself or alter his mechanics. But the issue hasn't resolved itself and Harvey came in after pitching in extended spring, with the same sort of symptoms.

    "I think we know ... I think we know where they're going," manager Buck Showalter said. "I know a little bit more than I'm talking about here, but I think him going to see a specialist [about] what may be going in there, that a groin's just not healing like it should. He's had plenty of time. I always look and here's the final piece. He'll get going depending on what they have to do to correct what I think, what we think they're going to find."

    Hunter underwent surgery for a sports hernia on May 2 in Philadelphia, via Dr. William Harvey. He was expected to return in June. (B Ghiroli - MLBcom - May 1, 2016)

  • July 26, 2016: Harvey had Tommy John surgery. The surgery was performed by Dr. Donald d’Alessandro in Charlotte. He used a tendon from his hamstring to repair his elbow.

    The flexor mass in his elbow had been an issue for Harvey in the past. The Orioles shut him down at low Class A Delmarva in July 2014 because of a strain.

    "With the elbow, we always try a number of different options before we get to surgery,” Orioles GM Dan Duquette said. “We knew that (he) had a couple of setbacks with his elbow, but based on the information and his willingness, we were going to try to pitch and see if he could pitch effectively.

    “There are several pitchers in the big leagues who can pitch effectively with the type of injury that Hunter had. Some of the younger pitchers, if they’re not as physically mature as some of the big leaguers, then you have to go the surgical option."

    Given standard Tommy John rehabilitation time, Harvey is likely to miss most, if not all, of the 2017 season. During his nearly two year rehab, Hunter also dealt with a shin fracture and a sports hernia during that time.

  • 2017 Season: Hunter missed almost all of the year while rehabbing from the TJ surgery. But he was activated on August 22, with the Delmarva Shorebirds (SAL).

  • September 18, 2018: Harvey was shut down again after feeling soreness in his right elbow. The Orioles hoped that Harvey, who hadn’t pitched in a game since June 1, would be able to pitch in the instructional league this month in Sarasota, Fla., and potentially in the fall league to somewhat salvage another injury-riddled season.

    But instead, he’s heading to see a specialist to get further examination on the root of his lingering discomfort issues, according to an industry source. The soreness comes about a month after Harvey was shut down while was progressing through a throwing program in Sarasota. He visited hand specialist Dr. Brian Schofield, received tests that revealed no structural damage, and he was diagnosed with tendinitis and cleared to resume throwing two weeks later.

  • July 21-Aug 30, 2020: The Orioles continue to hold back Hunter because of "arm fatigue." The flamethrower has a long injury history, missing big chunks of times from 2015-18 due to arm trouble before debuting in 2019. Hyde said Harvey is “going to need a little bit of time,” without specifying further.

    “We’re going to be conservative with Hunter because of his past,” Hyde said. “We are going to try to get him as healthy as possible before he gets out on the mound."

    Harvey started the season on the IL.

  • March 12-June 4, 2021: Harvey is being re-evaluated after sustaining a left oblique injury, Hyde said. Hyde said he hadn't received any updates on Harvey's condition by the time he left for a game in Dunedin. 

  • July 2, 2021: Harvey was on the IL with a right lat strain.

  • April 21-July 10, 2022: Harvey was on the IL with a right pronator strain.

  • July 16-Aug 15, 2023: The Nationals placed right-handed pitcher Hunter Harvey on the 15-day Injured List with a right elbow strain.

    July 17, 2023: An MRI revealed Harvey has a "mild strain" in his right elbow, said manager Dave Martinez. Harvey had experienced soreness in his right forearm and triceps, which raised concern due to his lengthy history of arm injuries.

    "Best-case scenario for us," Martinez said of the results. "We're going to shut him down for 10 days and then resume his throwing. But we'll just let it calm down a little bit and build some strength up and get him back as soon as we possibly can."