MINNEAPOLIS -- Travis d'Arnaud is here to stay.
After seeing the young catcher play in three games with John Buck on paternity leave, manager Terry Collins has seen some promising signs from d'Arnaud. But the skipper needed to consider whether remaining with the Mets or returning to Triple-A Las Vegas would be a better situation.
And apparently, staying in the big leagues is the answer.
"The only way this guy is going to improve is to be here and work with John Buck," Collins said after the Mets' 6-1 win over the Twins on Monday, noting that the catchers will split playing time going forward.
With Buck returning Wednesday, the Mets opened up a roster spot by optioning catcher Anthony Recker to Triple-A Las Vegas, although he's expected to return to the bigs when the rosters expand in September.
"There's certainly some very, very good signs," Collins said of d'Arnaud. "You watch him at the plate, the discipline that he's had -- during Spring Training, he didn't have that discipline, he's got it now. It's pretty impressive to see. ... He can throw, he's got a great release, a lot of positives. But you're only going to be able to tell if he's going to be an everyday guy by getting him out there."
Through his three games in the big leagues, d'Arnaud remains hitless, but he has walked five times in 12 plate appearances.
Collins praised d'Arnaud's effort Sunday catching righty Matt Harvey, something that's not an easy task, according to the skipper.
While it's only been three days, there were questions about whether d'Arnaud could be the Mets' everyday backstop come 2014. Before Monday's game, Collins did note that it's "awfully hard to judge in two days."
"He doesn't have a lot of at-bats for the season, but he was the guy that made the most sense to bring up here," Collins said. "... If he's going to get another 200 at-bats here in the final six weeks, yeah, it might benefit him to stay and play every day.
"You've got to look down the road and say, 'Is this going to be the everyday guy in 2014?' I don't have those answers right now."
While his Major League career is still in it's infancy, d'Arnaud is thankful for the opportunity and soaking in every moment he can.
"What an amazing feeling," d'Arnaud said. "I get to stay with the club and this group of guys -- just a great group of guys -- who truly love baseball. I'm really excited to see John and get some work with John again. I'm really excited."
Mets mapping out rotation with Harvey in mind
MINNEAPOLIS -- After losing starting pitcher Jenrry Mejia to a right elbow injury Saturday, the Mets are still looking for his replacement.
Manager Terry Collins said that while there is some sort of plan, nothing is set in stone. He is hoping to give Matt Harvey an extra day between his starts, at the very least.
"There's a real good shot we're going to let Matt have that extra day," Collins said. "It's not finalized, but that might be in our best interests and his best interest, [Zack] Wheeler's best interest, as we're going into the last month of the season. But right now, we've got to find someone to pitch Friday, if that's the case. And if we don't come up with someone to pitch Friday, we may have to ask the big boy to go out there."
After Monday's 6-1 win, Collins was asked again about who might fill Mejia's spot in the rotation Friday against the Tigers. Collins put it succinctly: "Right now, it's Carlos Torres.
Torres is 2-2 this season with a 3.00 ERA through 45 innings. He made three straight starts from July 13-28 and gave up 10 runs on 21 hits in that stretch. He also struck out 13.
• Triple-A Las Vegas is in the postseason hunt, and according to Collins, that experience is more valuable for up-and-coming players than being called up to the Majors in September, when rosters expand.
"In certain situations, I think it's very, very important -- especially for a young player -- to play in the postseason. I don't care where it's at," Collins said. "I really don't. Learning how to win, to me, goes hand in hand with developing players. ... You teach guys to play the game correctly and if they have talent enough, they'll win."
Kelly Erickson is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.