"Don't think for one second that there's not a guy in there that realizes that this is part of it. We just released one of the best professionals I ever been around in Jose Valverde," a fired-up Collins said. "You deal with it, and if you can't you don't belong in the game."
With one out in the ninth, Valverde gave up a single to Neil Walker and walked Andrew McCutchen.
Gary Sanchez, who homered off Scott Rice to open the eighth, then singled to left, scoring Walker. Juan Centeno couldn't handle Curtis Granderson's throw that bounced to the right of the plate and skittered past Valverde, who was backing up but way too close to the catcher. McCutchen scored on Granderson's error for a two-run lead.
Valverde gave up four runs as the Pirates took the lead. The 36-year-old righty was 1-1 with a 5.66 ERA.
Valverde joined the Mets this year after pitching for Detroit last season. He briefly was New York's closer before losing the job.
Reporters were told Valverde had left the ballpark even though his street clothes remained in his locker.
Right-hander Vic Black is being recalled from Triple-A Las Vegas to fill Valverde's spot.
"Our bullpen will get better when our young pitchers emerge at the major league level," Alderson said. "Not only will we have better arms, but we'll have more flexibility."
In the minors, top prospect Noah Syndergaard was placed on the disabled list, retroactive to May 22, because of a mild flexor-pronator strain in his right elbow. The flexor-pronator muscle is on the inside of the elbow, forearm area.
The Mets said the Triple-A Las Vegas ace will be brought to New York for an exam.
Syndergaard was acquired in a trade that sent 2012 Cy Young Award winner R.A. Dickey to Toronto. He is Baseball America's No. 6 righty pitching prospect and is expected to make his big league debut this year.
"We're very concerned about it, obviously, I don't know too many guys — I shouldn't say that, I know a lot of guys who go to the doctor and it's nothing. But I know some go to the doctor and it's an issue," Collins said. "Anytime you go in and the word 'elbow' shows up, especially when you throw as hard as he does, it's a concern.
NOTES: The Mets placed OF Eric Young Jr. on the DL because of a right hamstring strain. They recalled OF Matt den Dekker from Triple-A Las Vegas to take his place. ... Up Next: Pirates RHP Edinson Volquez (2-4) faces Mets LHP Jonathon Niese (3-3) on Tuesday night.