NEW YORK -- Throwing the first complete game of his career meant a lot to Matt Harvey.
"It feels awesome. It was something I wanted to do all year," Harvey said after tossing a four-hit shutout in the Mets' 5-0 win against the Colorado Rockies on Wednesday night. "The biggest thing is going out and trying to eat up innings. Fortunately enough I was able to do that."
New York Mets
Harvey's fastball had averaged 96.4 mph in his previous start in Miami, and he ran out of gas later in the game.
Mets manager Terry Collins and pitching coach Dan Warthen have preached to Harvey to try to take a few miles per hour off the fastball, conserve energy, pitch to contact and go deeper into games. Collins saw plenty of 94 and 95 mphs on the scoreboard Wednesday night and was heartened that Harvey was economical and left gas in his tank to toss the complete game.
The Mets are trying to conserve Harvey's innings as the season enters the final stretch. They are returning to a six-man rotation beginning Sunday. Still, Collins said he was not going to deny Harvey the opportunity to pitch a shutout.
"You don't have many opportunities to pitch shutouts," the manager said.
Collins then added that he did not know how many people were at Citi Field on Wednesday night, but estimated: "Twenty-thousand people came to see him pitch. They deserved it."
The fourth and final hit against Harvey struck him in the right knee with two outs in the ninth. Harvey described it to Collins as a glancing blow when the manager and trainer Ray Ramirez came to the mound to check on him.
Harvey said "I don't like when they come onto the field."
Collins said he would have had to be blind to have believed that Harvey had only suffered a glancing blow, but he let the ace finish on the condition from Ramirez that Harvey throw a practice pitch to establish he was OK.
"He played it off like it was just a brush," catcher John Buck said.
Confessed Harvey after the game: "It hit me pretty good ... but kind of grazed off."