New York Mets rumors link the team to Jose Reyes again. Reyes played for the Mets for the first 9 years of his MLB career, making the National League All-Star team four times. Now, a report from the New York Daily News states that Mets COO Jeff Wilpon “has strong interest” in acquiring Reyes again. He could potentially give the offense an immediate boost, something the Mets have needed recently. Wilpon also spoke about his frustrations with the team.
“Of course we’re concerned. Nobody’s happy with the way we’re playing. I meet with (Mets GM) Sandy (Alderson), Terry (Collins), (assistant GM) John Ricco all the time and they’re working on things to try and get us where we need to go and start playing better. Guys haven’t hit. I can’t tell you why. I think we might need to do something (before July 31). The deadline’s still four, six weeks away. We’ve got to start playing better baseball now.”
The reason these New York Mets rumors have surfaced is that the Colorado Rockies have decided to designate Jose Reyes for assignment. This was the first move that the Rockies made after reinstating him from the restricted list. Reyes had been serving a suspension under the league’s domestic violence policy and was ready to return to the team. It appears that the Rockies were ready to move in a different direction, with that decision aided by the success of Trevor Story at shortstop.
When a player gets designated for assignment, the team then has 10 days to trade, release, or assign that player to the minor leagues. As an MLB veteran, Reyes can decline an assignment to the minor leagues, making it easier for him to sign with a new franchise. A team could make a trade with the New York Mets for Reyes, but it would come with a contract that goes through the 2018 MLB season. Reyes earns $22 million for the 2016 and 2017 MLB seasons, and then he has a team option worth $22 million for the 2018 MLB season.
The most likely scenario in this situation, if the Colorado Rockies are intent on cutting ties with Jose Reyes, is that he simply gets released if the team cannot reach a deal with another franchise. It would leave the Rockies on the hook for the remainder of his contract this season, $22 million in 2017, and then $4 million through a buyout in the 2018 MLB season. If he signs with a new team, the Rockies would save whatever the new team pays him. It would likely be a minimum wage deal, though, as a new team wouldn’t want to foot the bill of his full contract.
Jose Reyes has played 14 MLB seasons (including 2016), spending time with the New York Mets, Toronto Blue Jays, Miami Marlins, and Colorado Rockies. Reyes has had trouble staying healthy during his career, but has put up All-Star level numbers when he is able to stay on the field. His 162-game averages include a 0.290 batting average, 107 runs scored, 59 extra base hits, 64 RBIs, and 50 stolen bases. If he could even get close to those numbers again, the Mets would see an increase in runs scored.
There is a lot of baggage coming with Reyes, no matter what team he winds up playing with for the rest of the 2016 MLB season. The 33-year-old shortstop still has the talent to play on an MLB team if he can remain healthy. On the surface, these New York Mets rumors might make a lot of sense, as he could help a team that has struggled to score runs on a consistent basis. But, is bringing on Reyes worth the public relations hit that the team could receive?
[Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images]