Be Careful What You Wish For…

At least that’s what I might say to Jose Reyes this morning. Now true, the Mets never bothered making an offer to Reyes knowing — a) last year they could not afford him and b) there were serious doubts among the Mets hierarchy that Reyes would have the kind of years his contract demands would warrant.

But if we are going to blame Sandy Alderson and staff for not kissing up to Reyes, where was the love from the Mets former shortstop and his agent? Did he ever go to Alderson and tell him how much he wanted to be a part of the Mets future?

Like so many baseball players and other professional athletes today, Reyes was driven by the bottom line. He took the best contract monetarily wise he could get, a six year 110 million dollar deal from the newly renamed Miami Marlins. Look, I’m not blaming him. An athlete’s career is short and he (or she) has the right to earn as much money as possible. All I am saying is I never faulted the Mets for their position because as much as Reyes was so popular and at times could be an unbelievable player, there were still many holes in his game and injuries caused him to miss a lot of time. Plus moving forward as Reyes would be heading into his 30s, there was a lot of concern for those legs which have been problematic in the past. And for those Mets bashers out there, no other team made any offers to Jose either. The Marlins bid against themselves in acquiring Reyes.

Well here we are today waiting on official word that Reyes will be heading to Toronto in a blockbuster deal that could make the Blue Jays a legitimate threat. The Jays will now have a real lead off hitter and an outstanding defender in Reyes at short. You cannot question this deal from the Jay’s side of things. Not only will they get Reyes, they are getting Mark Buehrle, Josh Johnson, John Buck,  and Emilio Bonifacio. That’s quite a haul basically for nothing. The Marlins get a lot of salary relief but the subject of the Marlins requires a completely different post to figure out that whole mess.

What I am focusing on here is Reyes. Here’s a guy who has had major issues with his hamstrings for years. Now he will be playing 91 of 162 games (81 at home and 10 in Tampa) on artificial turf, a substance that has been problematic for Reyes in the past. Although AstroTurf is long gone, the more pliable Field Turf is installed at Rogers Centre and in Tampa Bay’s Tropicana Field. But it will remain unclear how Reyes will do on the fake turf. But in Toronto, unlike Tampa, Reyes will be standing on the plastic stuff for most of the game since Rogers Centre is the only baseball diamond left in the majors with the blasphemous sliding boxes.

Reyes was traded because the one thing he and his agent could not acquire with his 100 plus million was a no trade clause. That meant the Marlins could send him (as well as the others who did not have a no trade clause) anywhere they pleased.

Perhaps Reyes is glad about the move but I am doubting so. Not only will Jose have to deal with artificial turf but he will also have the Canadian exchange rate and local taxes, something he did not need to worry about in Florida. Plus, and I am guessing here, I can’t imagine that Toronto has the Hispanic community that Reyes enjoyed in Miami and certainly so much so in New York.

Well, Reyes got his money after a stellar season when he won the batting title, the first in Mets history. But many fans never got over Reyes snubbing them by removing himself from the lineup after one at bat in the 2011 season finale. That’s the type of selfishness we never see from David Wright and that’s the difference between the two home grown stars. Frankly I am happy with Ruben Tejada at short moving forward and wish Reyes all the best. But its funny sometimes how things work out, isn’t it?

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