Is too much of Carlos Torres a bad thing?

There have been some solid long relievers in the history of the New York Mets: Don Cardwell, Ray Sadecki, and Terry Leach all come to mind. A good performance by a team’s primary long reliever is a mixed blessing. A significant contribution by a long reliever (just like a team’s primary pinch-hitter) can be beneficial to a team’s winning percentage but could be the result of a lack of quality, health, or stability with the team’s starters.

Carlos TorresLast year, Carlos Torres appeared in 33 games for the New York Mets. Overall, he hurled 86 innings for the major league squad but 158 total innings on the year. He went 4-6 with a 3.44 ERA. He’s 31, throws right-handed, stands 6’1″ and weighs 185 lbs.

He filled the gap in the club’s starting rotation after Matt Harvey went down and started nine games. His 2013 statistics include a 7.82 K/9 compared to only a 1.77 BB/9. His WHIP ended at 1.112.

A point of concern is that out of the 79 hits he gave up, 15 of them were HRs. A second issue of note is that he is out of options which means that if he doesn’t make the major league roster out of Spring Training, the Mets would need to let him pass through waivers before assigning him to Las Vegas.

Another possible choice for the team’s long reliever is John Lannan. He was signed to a minor-league contract but will be looking to make the team out of Spring Training. He is coming back from injuries and only pitched 74 innings last year. He throws left-handed and is two years younger than Torres. However, if Lannan does perform well, the team would rather see him compete for the fifth starter position.

During this off-season, a lot has been written about the shape of the team’s starting rotation and short relief. Which rookies, if any, will force their way into the rotation? Who will be the club’s closer on opening day? At this point though, it does appear that the Mets are planning on using Torres as their man in long relief.

And as for me, I’m hoping Torres has a good showing (…but not too good…) this year.

10 comments for “Is too much of Carlos Torres a bad thing?

  1. February 15, 2014 at 10:13 am

    I like Torres and I want to see him on the MLB roster. There’s no way the Mets should keep Lannan for a relief spot over him. Because it’s only a matter of time before TC converts Lannan from long reliever to LOOGY.

    • NormE
      February 15, 2014 at 1:34 pm

      Brian, I agree with your negative feelings about TC and the LOOGY. However, let’s share the blame for this overuse. Start with Sandy Alderson.
      He’s the GM and calls the shots re: the roster. If he disagrees with TC’s use of the LOOGY he can quickly put a stop to it. TC will do whatever Sandy wants. Therefore, the blame is an organizational thing. P.S. — If I could find a realistic way to include jeffy wilpon in this blame game, believe me, I would.

  2. amazin
    February 15, 2014 at 10:57 am

    I like Dice K, Lannan, and Torres in the BP. Enough of these games with 5-6 relievers. Parnell, Black, Familia, Dice K, Lannan, Torres, and then let Edgin,Farnsworth, and Valverde battle for the last spot. If two of those guys are good send Familia to Vegas to be the closer and call him up when somebody falters or gets hurt.

    • blastingzone
      February 15, 2014 at 11:50 am

      The mets will carry two lefty’s Edgin and Rice and don’t be surprised if they carry both
      Fansworth and Valverde plus Parnell, Black, and Torres with Familia and German going down to
      AAA because you know how Terry likes pitchers(and hitters)with experience! I would love to see Familiar, Walters, and Leathersick all make the bullpen this year but that ain’t going to

    • Sean Flattery
      February 15, 2014 at 1:10 pm

      I don’t see Dice-K making the team as a reliever, more like the first call-up for a fill-in start if he doesn’t snag fifth spot outta spring.

  3. Sean Flattery
    February 15, 2014 at 1:08 pm

    For Me, Pat Mahomes in 1999 always comes to mind of how valuable a long man in bullpen can be. Torres was terrific last season, I think he’ll pitch many meaningful innings early in the season

  4. Jim OMalley
    February 15, 2014 at 2:05 pm

    I hope Torres contributes some meaningful games as well. Not too many and not too few ….

  5. Metsense
    February 15, 2014 at 6:19 pm

    Too much of Torres is a bad thing. If he has to start a game then it means the Mets have two failed veterans, a few prospects that crashed and burned and an injury to one or two starters. Of the 111 relief pitchers that pitched at least 30 innings, Torres is ranked 66th in ERA. That does not give me a whole lot of confidence for him pitching the late innings with a lead and tempers any desire for me use any superlatives to describe him. Torres as a middle reliever to eat up some innings is adequate and his 2013 performance and lack of options makes him a good candidate to break camp on the major league roster, but too much of Torres is a bad thing.

    • February 15, 2014 at 6:37 pm

      Torres did great as a relief pitcher last year. In 36.2 IP out of the pen he had a 1.47 ERA and a 0.873 WHIP. His numbers as a SP drag that down but even that’s misleading. He had two bad starts against the Nationals. Take those away and his other seven starts he had a 2.74 ERA.

  6. Jim OMalley
    February 16, 2014 at 11:53 am

    I agree A little Torres this year is not a sign of failure but of a solid contributor.

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