Under most circumstances, SNY analyst Keith Hernandez isn’t gonna be accused of blatant homerism. Occasional sexism or eagerness to bolt on a blowout, perhaps, but rarely has Mex parroted a company line. So it’s with that history of broadcasting excellence in that mind that it is a little disappointing to see the New York Daily News’ Bob Raissman lay into Hernandez for the latter’s (understandable) enthusiasm for the performances of sophomore pitching phenom Matt Harvey, who not only finds himself overshadowing Stephen Strasburg tonight, but might end up being the only compelling reason to watch the New York Mets this season. Regardless, Raissman warns Hernandez, “pull back on the gaga factor. If you don’t, crossing over from analyst into Fan Boy territory is easy to do,”, then suggesting that during Harvey’s stellar showing against Minnesota last Saturday, Keith crossed the line.
Hernandez should have limited the reminders and let the pictures do the talking. Instead he delivered lines like: “I’m just enjoying watching this man work.” Or how Harvey was “executing” pitches. Or how “relentless” Harvey was. This was evident just by watching. Hernandez was “enjoying” Harvey’s performance so much he often stated the obvious, something he rarely does.
As Justin Morneau’s drive hit off the right field foul pole for a home run, breaking up the no-hitter, Hernandez released a groan and an “oh,” sounding more like a disappointed fan then an analyst.
In the eighth, he talked about soliciting a bit of praise for Harvey. “I went over and talked to Bert Blyleven, the Hall of Fame pitcher, in the booth to our right, and said: ‘What do you think of our guy?’”
Our guy? Hernandez sounded like a cross between a proud, pom-pom carrying Mets fan and Sandy Alderson. It would be absolutely no surprise if Harvey’s brilliance can make a grown man — like Hernandez — cry, too.