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Ron Darling adds perspective to Matt Harvey's late arrival to Mets' practice

Former professional baseball player Ron Darling attends Joe

Former professional baseball player Ron Darling attends Joe Torre's Safe At Home Foundation's 10th Anniversary Gala at Pier 60 on Jan. 24, 2013. Photo Credit: Getty Images

PITTSBURGH -- On the day after Matt Harvey's late arrival to Mets practice, pitching coach Dan Warthen on Wednesday said, "There were a lot of boys on that '86 team that didn't make practice, either."

Ron Darling, an actual '86 Met, said he understood what Warthen meant: The latest L'Affaire Harvey isn't the biggest deal and shouldn't stop the Mets from reaching their ultimate goal.

"It's really hard for me to criticize," Darling said last night at PNC Park, where he called the Pirates-Cubs NL wild-card game for TBS. "Half our team didn't make the [World Series] parade . . . We had guys who barely showed up to games."

The 2015 Mets hardly have the '86 Mets' reputation for partying. It's unclear exactly why Harvey was late for Tuesday's first practice of the postseason. Captain David Wright made it clear he was unhappy with Harvey by praising the rest of the team for showing up.

"I think David handled it brilliantly," Darling said. "He was very positive about the people that were there and by his positivity he let everybody know he was not very happy with the person that wasn't there."

As for Harvey, the Mets' Game 3 starter in the NLDS against the Dodgers, Darling said: "To me, it's not a big thing because he's not pitching for so many days. I can see that because of the history of this year it can become an irritant to some of the guys in that clubhouse. But for me, I would be more in the 'Allen Iverson' camp."

As in Iverson's 2001 rant: "We're talking about practice? Not a game. Not a game . . . "

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