8/14/2014 1:14 A.M. ET
Torres shakes off concerns of tipping pitches
By Tim Healey / MLB.com
NEW YORK -- When Nationals outfielder Michael Taylor shot a fastball over the right-field wall Tuesday for his first home run in the Majors, the chatter in the Mets dugout wasn't about Taylor's impressive big league debut. Instead, they wondered whether Carlos Torres has been tipping his pitches.
Tuesday marked the fourth consecutive outing -- and the sixth time in his last eight games -- in which Torres has yielded a long ball. Torres' ERA has risen to 3.76 from 2.88 in that span, and he now leads all Mets relievers in home runs allowed (10). His last three outings have all been against the Nationals.
"Location, location, location. There's not much else to say," manager Terry Collins said. "This guy has really pitched well, and right now he's making mistakes in the middle of the plate. As a matter of fact, we talked in the dugout about possibly maybe he's tipping somehow, because he's getting hit way too hard."
Torres, though, seemed confident that was not the case. He believes he's discovered the issue, but for now he wants to stay mum on the specifics.
"I'm not going to share. I have very strong suspicions as to why [I've struggled]," Torres said "Nothing to do with tipping pitches."
What's more frustrating to Torres is the walks. Jenrry Mejia (35 free passes), who made seven starts before moving to the bullpen, is the only Mets reliever who has issued more walks than Torres (25) this season.
Twice in his last four games, Torres walked a batter immediately before giving up a homer -- Madison Bumgarner preceding Buster Posey's shot on Aug 3., then Ian Desmond prior to Bryce Harper's walk-off last Thursday. The only other occasion Torres has done that this season was June 6, when he walked Angel Pagan before Posey homered.
"Home runs are going to come and go, especially depending on which park you're playing in and depending on what you're doing," Torres said.
Such was the case Aug. 6, when he was experimenting with a split-finger fastball during a blowout loss to the Nationals. One didn't split enough and Adam LaRoche made it a souvenir.
"It's not the home runs that's such an issue," Torres said. "The walks before hurt you."
Harvey continues rehab, club stays cautious
NEW YORK -- There is no end in sight for the back-and-forth game between Matt Harvey and the Mets regarding the right-hander's rehab from Tommy John surgery.
A day after general manager Sandy Alderson suggested the club will scale back Harvey's throwing program, Harvey threw a 27-pitch bullpen session in Port St. Lucie, Fla. Manager Terry Collins expected to chat with Harvey and pitching coach Dan Warthen on the phone Wednesday afternoon to discuss the possibility of slowing down, but that did not happen.
Instead, Harvey took to the radio.
"I want to get back out there as soon as possible, but health is the main factor," Harvey said during a spot on ESPN New York. "I think the tough part with that is just how good I feel and how good the ball is coming out. I threw a bullpen today and didn't miss a spot.
"Every body is different. … For me, I'm going off the way my body feels and is responding to me the whole process. It's been nothing but success."
Harvey added that his velocity reached the low 90s Wednesday "with pretty much no effort."
The battle consists of Harvey wanting to be aggressive in his rehab, while the Mets would rather be more conservative. Harvey appeared to be meeting the club somewhat in the middle when he saw Jeremy Hefner, a fellow Tommy John patient, suffer a setback in recent days.
"One of the reasons why we have tried to back Matt off is because how he is mentally," Collins said. "This guy is a bulldog. There is no such thing as low speed, low gear. He's all-out forward. The phone call was made [Tuesday], where [Harvey said], 'Look, I have to back this down a little bit.' And yet today he went out and threw a 27-pitch bullpen.
"It's hard to get a hold of him. He was on the radio."
• Asdrubal Cabrera's eighth-inning homer off Jeurys Familia in the Nationals' 3-2 win Wednesday night brought an end to a couple of streaks for the Mets' right-handed reliever. It was the first long ball he allowed in 46 1/3 innings over 46 games, a stretch dating back to May 4. Additionally, following the one run he allowed the Phillies on Monday, Familia yielded runs in back-to-back appearances for the first time since March 31-April 3 -- his first games of the season.
• Travis d'Arnaud's 10 home runs are the most ever by a Mets rookie catcher.
Tim Healey is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.