Jose Reyes has had an up and down career but one thing is a constant, Jose loves to play for the New York Mets. Jose was called up in 2003, a day before his 20th birthday and he quickly won the hearts of the fans. A 4x All Star, 3x Stolen Base Leader, NL Hitting Leader and a Silver Slugger, Jose gave all he had to give to the Mets from 2003 to 2011. When his contract was up in 2011 though, The New York Mets didn’t make him an offer and so he signed with the Miami Marlins in December of that year. All his stats had dropped in his first season in a non-Met uniform. He didn’t preform poorly, he still finished the season with a .287 Batting Average and came in 2nd with triples in the NL.
During the 2012 off season Reyes was traded to the Toronto Blue Jays. But in early April he had to be carted off the field with an ankle injury and wouldn’t play again until the end of June. Due to the injuries, he’d only play in 93 games during the 2013 season and finished with a .296 Batting Average, 37 RBIs and 15 Stolen Bases. The 2014 season saw Reyes battle with some other minor injuries. He was placed on the 15 day Disabled List after aggravating a preexisting Hamstring injury on opening day. He was activated again on April 19th before returning to the DL with a rib injury on April 28th. Reyes would play 69 games with the Blue Jays but was traded to The Rockies during July. Between both teams, Reyes finished with a .274 Batting Average, 19 Home Runs and 53 RBI.
During the 2015-2016 off season, Reyes was charged with domestic assault from an incident with his wife during a vacation in Hawaii. He was suspended and missed the first 51 games for the Rockies. He was later designated for assignment.
On June 25th 2015, Reyes was officially a free agent and the Mets signed him to a minor league deal. It was the return I had dreamed about. Jose Reyes was one of the first Mets I really remember watching and seeing play. When I went to Shea Stadium in 6th grade with my family, I got to see Jose play and I bought a small plaque that had his baseball card in it. He was my favorite Met (probably because my mom loved him so much). I believe everyone deserves a second chance. And, while I thought what happened with Jose and his wife was terrible, he deserved a second chance and the Mets gave him one. Jose only played 60 games with the Mets in 2016 but he was the spark plug that the team needed. 33 at the time, he wasn’t the same speedy Jose we all saw in 2003, but he stole 9 bases. Finishing the season with a .267 Batting Average, the Mets picked up his option which kept him in New York through the 2017 season.
Now, I know I’ve just been spewing out statistics and his whole life history, but I think Jose’s value to the team is more than just what he does on the field. I know, that sounds stupid. It’s baseball. He needs to hit. He needs to play defense. That’s what matters. Right? Well, yeah. But there’s no denying what a veteran player brings to a ball club. Now, this is JUST a theory, but I personally believe Jose Reyes played a big role in Cespedes signing with the Mets again. Cespedes was a free agent at the end of the 2016 season and wasn’t ready to commit to the Mets. The bond that Reyes and Cespedes have is evident whenever they’re shown on TV together. Wether they’re goofing off and dancing in the dugout, or dying their hair blonde, it’s clear that the two get along. And I think Reyes told Cespedes that going where the money is, isn’t always the best career move. Or something along those lines. Maybe not. Maybe I’m just trying to make this feel more like a movie, but I’d like to think that Jose Reyes helped keep Yo in New York. And I also like to think he played a role in defusing the situation with Cabrera and Terry in 2017. Cabrera was asking to be traded because he didn’t want to play 2nd base. Cabrera and Reyes have a bond similar to that of Reyes and Cespedes. They were always goofing off and hyping one another up in the dugout, making each other laugh, ya know, friend stuff. I like to think Reyes talked some sense into Cabrera and got him to stay in New York as well.
BUT, besides those theories, there’s facts that can’t be denied. Jose Reyes mentored Amed Rosario before he was even called up to the MLB. Jose stayed in touch with him all the time. And when Rosario did get called up, Jose acknowledged that he was the future of the franchise and he helped mentor him on and off the field. Rosario told people that Reyes wasn’t just teaching him about baseball, but teaching him how to play AND live in New York.
Jose Reyes is going to be 35 in 2018. He’d be the oldest guy on the team, and he’d be the player with the most experience as a Met. With David Wright’s future seemingly unsure, and Curtis Granderson likely not being brought back, the club needs a veteran presence. Cabrera is a veteran in his own right, but Jose has been with the Mets longer than anyone on the team right now (besides Wright). The influence Jose brings to his teammates is indisputable and he knows his role. He realizes that Amed Rosario is going to be taking over his job at short stop, he’s willing to play where they ask him to and he’d probably settle for a little more than the league minimum.
SO, should the Mets sign Jose Reyes? Yes. Of course they should. Does it make sense from a GM standpoint? Probably not. But that’s why I’m not a GM, I’m just a fan with a blog that no one really reads. BUT, I think if I got to sit down with Sandy Alderson for a while, I could talk some sense into him and get him to sign Jose Reyes. Hell, I could probably even get him to build a Jose Reyes statue in center field (like that stupid Marlin’s statue, except this would be classy). If you’re reading this Sandy, hit me up on twitter, we can set up an appointment. Or, just skip that nonsense and sign Jose Reyes. Thank you.