Coutinho: For Mets’ Jose Reyes, The Hits Just Keep On Coming

By Rich Coutinho
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It’s the question that’s been asked since the Mets arrived at spring training: What will Sandy Alderson do at the trading deadline?

What a great question. So many people have pontificated about what the team should do — and should not do — in regards to Jose Reyes, Carlos Beltran, and Francisco Rodriquez. So, with 8 weeks to go until the July 31st deadline, we’re all still anxious to know what the Mets have up their sleeves. And truth be told, on Beltran and K-Rod, nobody really knows.

I can tell you this: Reyes’ profile has risen dramatically inside the organization, and rightfully so.

You know, we all talk about leadership. Reyes is showing it on and off the field. He is in a contract year, yet we don’t hear a peep out of him about it — even after the team’s owner made a misguided comment. On the field, Reyes has been the best in baseball at his position and you could make a case he’s been the NL’s top player so far in 2011.

Off the field, he has become an understated leader, mentoring players like Justin Turner and Ruben Tejada. I have noticed it because, well, I asked the two players and both infielders told me Reyes has taken them under his wing and helped them become better players.

And I’d like to stress once again — not one word about his contract. What he wants, what the Mets owe him, what the world owes him for that matter.

COUNTERPOINT: Hartnett: Don’t Expect Reyes To Remain On Mets

He has even taken the high road with his detractors in the media who said this and that about him last year. Instead, he has made himself accessible to all reporters every day. He is very humble about his success. That’s the way Jose was brought up. And when certain reports in this town brought up theories about the team choosing between  and David Wright –reports that were unsubstantiated, I might add — Reyes did not let it drive a wedge between the two. His friendship with Wright is very important to him.

The voice of Mets fans on the Reyes issue has been very noticeable and I had a chance to talk to some of them at Citi Field this weekend. Lets face it, the fan’s voice on this issue is important to consider and as I have stated on numerous occasions, the Mets fan is often times portrayed by the media as paranoid, negative and downright snarky. Although that is a great way to describe most of the media (especially with the advent of social networking), that is not an accurate depiction of the Mets fan — at least not the ones I know.

Last year, they were calling for Reyes to remain with this club and the media that are now FINALLY jumping on the bandwagon are late arriving to the party. But the truth is, most Mets fans never stopped loving Reyes AND Wright — even when times were tough. Reyes’ effervescent style personifies the fan who generally needs very little persuading to jump up and down, much like the fiery shortstop.

They were brought up with “Let’s Go Mets,” “Ya Gotta Believe” and “We Got The Teamwork To Make The Dream Work.” They know that Reyes and Wright are part of the solution that will lead this team out of the wilderness. I firmly believe that Sandy Alderson has been coming to that assumption as well. And the Wilpons, despite all of the negative comments, know it too.

I said it in spring training and I will say it again — I simply believe Reyes and Wright will be wearing Mets uniforms after the trading deadline. Both will be patrolling the left side of the infield. Nothing I have seen this season has made me change my mind on that issue. Nothing.

Agree? Disagree? Let Coutinho know in the comments below…

  • vincent

    Jose Reyes, at this point, is a viable MVP candidate.
    Question: Has any potential MVP candidate been traded at the trading deadline? I know there must have been someone, but I can’t think of a player who has been traded/dumped by a team at deadline who at the time was a leading MVP candidate.

  • Maz

    Ok so the only two months that mattered were the two bad months in 07 and 08? We are just going to ignore everything else he has done because apparently they don’t count for you. And he did still manage to score close to 20 runs in each of those months even though he didn’t hit well. The Mets wouldn’t have even been in position to be close to the playoffs without him.

    • The Truth

      no Maz, they all count, that’s the point, you just can’t say look what he did in these years, bring up those stats, because they happened to stand out more than the other years & say he is a great & not include the rest.

      Mantle & Clemente were was plagued with injuries their entire career yet both went out & played. One became one of the greatest sport icons in American history; the other also went into the Hall of Fame.

      Reyes injured his leg & is out for months. Enough of using injuries as an excuse, its part of the game, part of sports.

      Reyes is what he is, a good player, who right now is having an early standout year. He’s a key player who counted on playing 162 games and not to disappear down the stretch.

      You’re given Reyes too much credit in saying he puts the Mets in position to be close to the playoffs when in reality the Mets have choked, missed the playoffs & Reyes is one of the reasons why.

  • Mark

    Any common sense employer will look at an individuals habits, work ethic and contributions over a reasonable period of time. Why, because what a person did yesterday is what they are likely to do tomorrow. But 59 games of the 2011 season (no less in a contract year) is not a reasonable period of time. The other 9 years matter a whole lot. That being said, trade him.

  • Save Reyes

    Overrated? He is second in the LEAGUE in WAR to Batista.

    WAR: Batters
    Jose Bautista 4.9
    Jose Reyes 3.2
    Joey Votto 3.2
    Matt Joyce 3.1
    Alexei Ramirez2.9

  • Richie

    So where has this Reyes been the last 9 yrs? You’re right on something.
    Reyes is on his final year of his contract, that’s a sign right there.

    Reyes is gone, gone baby gone by August. Say good-by to your homegrown overrated player, that’s if he does not get hurt before then. Then he’s gone after the season, either way, Reyes will be an ex-Met

    • Master Shake

      Who care about the past nine seasons? What matters is this here and now.

      • Richie

        It matters; you’re going to break the Mets little bank or whatever money they may not have on a guy for what he has done for the first 59 games of the year & not for what he has done in the last 9 yrs & with a speculations what he may do in the next 7 yrs because of what he has done these 59 games.

        This is why the Mets are broke, have not won in 25 yrs because they live, as all the Mets fans do, on the assumptions Reyes is the greatest & will win a WS for the Mets when in 9 yrs he hasn’t done the job.

        This of a career .286 hitter, who currently in hitting .336, but with just 1 hrs & just 21 rbi’s in 59 games.

        Mets fans do live in Fantasy Island

    • Maz

      This Reyes has always been here! He has been one of the best and most exciting players in the league and has gotten little respect. Everyone is saying he is having his best year ever because of the contract.. currently on pace for 116 runs, 2 hr, 59 rbi, 54 steals and a .337 avg. Has everyone forgotten this guy has already given us seasons of 122/19/81/64/.299… 119/12/57/78/.280… 113/16/68/56/.296?

      Since 2005, no one has been better! One season was ruined because on the injury and thats all anyone focuses on. Just look at the games played in the stat book.. 161, 153, 160, 159, 36, 133. Reyes is a one of a kind player and has been unappreciated for years.. as has Beltran and Wright.

      Just wait till these guys are gone and fans see what its like without them … it will be a mess. Anyone who doesn’t think Reyes is a top player in the game clearly doesn’t watch him play everyday and probably just listens to the fat man on the radio who really only watches Yankee games. Because he has no concept of the entire league either.

      • What Do The Yankees Have To Do With The Mets?

        You also forgot to list the fact that Reyes hit just .170 for the entire the month of September in ’07 & just .240 for the entire the month of September in ’08 & stole very few bases both years.

        You remember ’07 & ’08 when the Mets choked the lead, the division & did not make the playoffs both times?

        Reyes was part of the reason the Mets choked. Reyes choked when the Mets really needed him most.

        So what’s your point in listing those numbers & not included the ones that matter the most.

        You’re spending too much time dreams of the Mets & not seeing the real world the way you should.

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