Luis Torrens running away with Mets’ backup catcher job once Francisco Alvarez returns

Luis Torrens Mets
New York Mets’ Luis Torrens celebrates his home run during the sixth inning of a baseball game against the Washington Nationals, Wednesday, June 5, 2024, in Washington. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)

The Mets are getting their starting catcher back sooner rather than later as Francisco Alvarez continues rehabbing with Single-A Brooklyn, which included another full game behind the plate on Sunday and a scoreless inning working with recovering closer Edwin Diaz. 

The young backstop’s return leaves first-year manager Carlos Mendoza and president of baseball operations David Stearns with the decision of who will remain as his backup, either Tomas Nido or Luis Torrens. 

Torrens, however, has made this as easy a decision as possible. This is his job moving forward. 

Since being acquired from the Yankees on May 31, the 28-year-old journeyman has been invaluable to the Mets — the eighth franchise he has been with since 2016.

In six games (16 ABs), he is batting .313 with a 1.139 OPS, two home runs, and four RBI. That included two RBI in an 8-7 win over the Washington Nationals on June 3. Two nights later, he clubbed a pair of round-trippers in a 9-1 win. 

His biggest play yet, however, came on the defensive side of things Sunday during the Mets’ London Series finale against the Philadelphia Phillies. With the bullpen doing their usual imploding, walking in a run with the bases loaded with one out to cut a two-run lead in half, Torrens pounced on a topped Nick Castellanos grounder just in front of home plate, stepped on the dish, and fired to first to complete a game-ending and preserving double play. 

“What a great play,” Mendoza told reporters after the game (h/t SNY). “The instincts not to only go get the baseball, but having the ability to come back, touch the plate, and then execute the throw — unbelievable play. I don’t think I’ve seen it before.”

New York Mets relief pitcher Jake Diekman (30) and catcher Luis Torrens, left, celebrates after a baseball game against the Washington Nationals, Monday, June 3, 2024, in Washington. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)

Torrens’ arm has also been a revelation for a team that had struggled all year controlling the basepaths. He has thrown out three out of four would-be base stealers (75%). Nido, Alvarez, and Omar Narvaez combined to throw out just eight of 69 base stealers (11.5%). 

With Narvaez released, Nido was brought back to the Mets when Alvarez went down injured in April. In 32 games, he is batting just .229 with a .623 OPS, three home runs, and eight RBI. 

If the Mets opt not to carry three catchers, the choice between keeping Torrens or Nido seems like a no-brainer.

For more on the Mets, visit AMNY.com