NEW YORK – “It was the last thing I was expecting when I went in this morning.”

Those were current Mets pitcher and former Tar Heel Matt Harvey’s words following his unexpected twist of fate. He has certainly hit a major snag in his rise to stardom this year.

Mets general manager Sandy Alderson announced on Monday that Harvey has a partially torn ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) inhis right elbow. The injury is devastating for a pitcher and Tommy John surgery may be needed.

“This was a surprise to all of us,” Alderson said at a Monday press conference. “Especially Matt himself. He has not had any elbow pain. Forearm pain can foretell problems with the elbow, but in this particular circumstance there had been no indications of that. It’s not good news, obviously.”

The injury probably couldn’t have come at a worse time. Harvey has emerged this season for the Mets. He has pitched 178.1 innings with a 2.27 ERA and 191 strikeouts. What’s more, Harvey started the All-Star Game for the National League and was a Cy Young candidate.

Harvey swears that he will do everything he can to avoid the surgery. Tommy John surgery would put Harvey out of the game for at least a full year.

“The last thing anybody wants to do is have surgery if you don’t have to,” Harvey said. “I know the studies and the history of this type of injury that usually leads to having the surgery but everybody’s different.”