"He's getting close," assistant general manager John Ricco said. "He's getting antsy. But we're really trying, based on the Spring Training experience, to hold him back."
Ricco's comments were in reference to the final week of spring, when Torres battled back from an identical calf injury to break camp with the team. But he re-injured the muscle on Opening Day, and has not made much progress since.
Working out Monday at the team's Spring Training complex in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Torres hit off a tee, took soft-toss swings and played catch, and is scheduled to perform the same routine on Tuesday. A return before May seems unlikely.
Without him, the Mets have been proceeding with shortstop Ruben Tejada as their leadoff hitter. But Tejada has cooled somewhat after a torrid start, prompting manager Terry Collins to pencil his shortstop in for an off-day on Thursday.
"We're trying to make sure that we keep our guys as fresh as we can," Collins said.