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Thoughts on the Reyes Situation

By Mike Silva ~ March 11th, 2010. Filed under: Mike Silva, New York Mets.

The worst case scenario became a reality for the Mets as Jose Reyes will be out 2-8 weeks, and probably longer, because of the accelerated thyroid situation. For a team that has seen so much bad happen to them since September of 2007, this appears to be a recurring nightmare. I was confident they could navigate the first month of the season without Beltran, but losing Reyes is a whole other story. His offense is irreplaceable, but more importantly, they are weakened with their up the middle defense. The irony is the Mets are back to where they were last May 19th: hoping to hold the fort down until their two stars come back. They start out in the standings on even ground, but that could change quickly and they may be faced with a summer of catch up baseball.

Before you close shop and wait for 2011, there could be reasons why this team, unlike last year’s edition, could navigate the first 4-6 weeks of the season without two of their offensive cogs. The depth is a lot better than a year ago. The Mets really didn’t have a backup shortstop, but have three they could choose from. Everyone is talking about Alex Cora and Ruben Tejada, but there is another in camp: Russ Adams.

Adams was actually Toronto’s starting shortstop in 2005 and put up a .707 OPS. He isn’t Reyes, of course, but he is an upgrade offensively from Cora and the unknown Tejada. Unlike the other two he can provide power and drive in runs, although he struggles against LHP. He is no better a defensive replacement (career UZR/150 of -13.5) than the other two, which clearly is a major issue. Tejada might be the best choice on the defensive end, but I was unimpressed with his range when I watched him play in Binghamton last season. Still, he is very young (20) and has room for improvement.

The “I told you so” crowd will now have more reason to be angry with Omar Minaya for not pursuing Felipe Lopez. Could the Mets pull off a deal? Its spring training and anything is possible. Back in 2005 they were able to round out their rotation by acquiring Kaz Ishii a week before the season ends. What they need now is someone that could play every day while Reyes is out. Quite frankly, Alex Cora just isn’t that guy.

The bigger picture is how will this team respond? Jerry Manuel already has his doubters (including me) and if they throw the towel in early his dismissal could come before Cinco de Mayo. Last year’s team gave up after they were swept by the Yankees. Actually, they still had a chance come late July, but the talent gap was too much to overcome. A hot start by Bay, Wright, and even more essential, Francoeur could hold down the fort for a few weeks. The temptation to bring a Fernando Martinez or Ike Davis north becomes that much greater. Daniel Murphy now needs to be the guy we saw in September.

I don’t believe in curses, but this club is again being tested by the baseball gods. There is no offseason to wash away the problem. They need to face their challenges and try to overcome it as best they can. This demon just won’t go away and the pleasure it took the last three years apparently wasn’t enough. The good news is everyone is tied for first and by June the core will finally be in the lineup for the first time since last May. Right now, that is all you can hope for with this terrible situation.

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Mike Silva has hosted sports shows on 107.1 FM Champions ESPN Radio Long Island ,1240 AM WGBB , Blog Talk Radio and live from Mickey Mantle’s Restaurant. He’s also built and maintained two popular social media hubs: New York Baseball Digest and Sports Media Watchdog. Mike has broken national and local stories, as well as been mentioned on the YES Network, SNY.tv, WFAN, Sports Illustrated, ESPN, NY Daily News, New York Magazine, Journal News and the NY Post. Contact Mike professionally at mikesilvamedia.com

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2 Responses to Thoughts on the Reyes Situation

  1. Docta Mark

    Mike -

    I listened to Eddie C and Mike ponder all this. Now it’s Joe and Evan…saw the SNY riffs too…and I’m convinced: they’re cursed!

    And maybe we are as fans. If we simply remove the expectation
    of ever getting a straight answer we’ll all find better things to do.

    With what they did release, we’re still not sure if we’re looking at an infection, an autoimmiune condition or a systemic hormonal disorder. And if the intervention is rest, diet, and periodic blood tests, what happens when he’s playing in July and August? What’s
    the ‘process’ then? That’s why we needed a simple, mainstream, life’s a bitch and then you die medicial opinion today. We’re lawst!

    Get your seats for those first 40 games fast, MRF 03.11

  2. Mark P

    The Mets medical staff and choices of doctors are apparently a bunch of hacks (or quacks). No one gets the full story, no one makes solid decisions, and no one seems to bother with second opinions. I’m sorry but if my doctor says I have a serious medical concern, I’m asking at least 1 if not 2 more doctors for their opinions and prognosis for treatment. This carry over from last year’s methodology is going to ruin the team again. It’s the doctors, not just the team being snakebit. (And if they were snakebit, the doctors would’nt get that diagnosis and treatment right either. QUACK!)

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