Matt Harvey's injury would be a terrible blow to the Mets under any circumstances. But contending teams have enough depth to overcome, or at least mitigate, the damage. The Mets will finally be a contender again when an awful day like this one does not have people writing off the next season.
In February 2011, Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright was found to need Tommy John surgery. The previous year, Wainwright had won 20 games with a 2.42 ERA, 1.05 WHIP and 213 strikeouts. He finished second in Cy Young voting after finishing third the previous year.
Losing Wainwright appeared to derail the Cardinals' hopes for 2011, particularly since it happened too late for the Cardinals to do much about it before the season started.
That season, the Cardinals won the World Series.
Wainwright returned in 2012, and in 2013 made the All-Star team (and got booed by Met fans).
Last season, the Giants won the World Series despite two-time Cy Young winner Tim Lincecum pitching so poorly that he was dropped from the rotation.
This season, the Dodgers won a historic 42 of 50 games, mostly without injured star outfielder Matt Kemp.
Even with Harvey, the Mets as currently constructed had a ways to go before contending in 2014. But they can still use 2014 to continue building the type of team that one day could actually overcome the loss of a Matt Harvey.