NEW YORK -- It hasn't taken long for Matt Harvey to become one of the biggest stars in baseball. Growing up in Connecticut, the Mets ace knew where success in New York could take him -- he grew up watching Yankees stars become larger-than-life figures.
With a 2.00 ERA and more strikeouts (132) than any other pitcher in the National League, Harvey has become one of those figures in his first full season in the Majors.
The immediate stardom has made him a hot commodity, so Harvey hit the MLB.com Chatting Cage before Tuesday's game with the D-backs to answer questions from fans via a live webcam.
"Any time you can interact with the fans and stuff, obviously you can do it through Twitter, but having your face getting shown and being able to interact is something special," the National League Cy Young Award contender said.
Harvey fielded questions from an array of topics, ranging from all aspects of his play on the diamond to how he prepares for each game to this month's All-Star Game at Citi Field.
The Mets' ace was asked how he gets treated on the road -- "I can't really say it over the air what some Philly fans have said," he responded. He got asked about what it would mean to start the All-Star Game -- "Growing up as a kid, I don't think you could want anything better," he said. He even got asked about whether he thought about taking a swing as a pinch-hitter in Monday's 5-4 win over Arizona -- "Obviously, that thought came into my head," he confessed, "but I just knew I had to get the bunt down."
Harvey also got asked about some players he grew up idolizing. He mentioned Derek Jeter -- it would be a thrill to face him -- and Paul O'Neill, two Yankees for perhaps the most important Met.
"Any time somebody brings up the question about who I idolized or watched mostly, it's always a Yankee," he said with a sheepish laugh. "So I always feel bad about answering that question, truthfully."
As long as he keeps throwing the ball the way he has been, Mets fans probably won't mind too much.
David Wilson is an associate reporter for MLB.com.