No time to sulk if Reyes leaves Mets

If you are immersed in the Mets’ blogosphere, you assuredly have read the obituary that has been written for the Mets, since it seems unlikely that the Mets will retain their franchise shortstop Jose Reyes.

If Reyes leaves- it is told through many others-the Mets will be one chaotic mess. Expect the demise of the Mets to be greatly exaggerated.

Look, the Mets haven’t been a good baseball ball club for the last three years. The Mets’ record in the last three years (226 and 260) suggests that they have been an incompetent team. Mets’ fans have to face the reality that their team hasn’t been a player in NL for years.  2006 was five years ago and gone is the thought they are close to resembling a playoff caliber team.

By the way, in those three years, who was playing shortstop for the majority of the time? Jose Reyes. The same player many Mets’ fans are obsessing to keep.

I am in no way advocating for the Mets to not pursue Reyes and make an appropriate offer, but rather I am cushioning myself for the blow when and if Reyes bolts Queens.

I get it. Reyes is a fan favorite. His exciting brand of baseball has broad appeal and his impact on the franchise goes beyond what he does on the field. His charm is marketable. These are factors that cannot be overlooked. For a cash-strapped franchise, losing a player of Reyes’ caliber will hurt the team in regards to tickets sold and trumping up casual fan interest.

However, look at it from on-the-field perspective. Reyes has battled lingering hamstring injuries for far too long and what if the Mets resign him and he misses big chunks of the season/s again? What happens then? Well, the Mets would be right back where they started. At least if they lose him they can save some money, which then can be used toward the rebuilding process.

The Mets need to build from within; develop a core of home grown players (think Ike Davis, Lucas Duda, Daniel Murphy along with pitchers Zack Wheeler, Matt Harvey, Jeurys Familia) and then add pieces through free agency/trades when they can logistically and financially afford to.

If the Mets were to resign Reyes, a player in his prime, wouldn’t it be ideal for them to build around him and add more pieces? At this point for the Mets, that’s not fiscally possible and that’s probably why the Mets aren’t going to get in a bidding war. So, if you bring back Reyes, you’re just bringing him back to an already mediocre team. If Reyes walks, at the very least you can expedite the rebuilding plans.

Losing a homegrown player of Reyes ilk will of course sting in any context you put it in. In his nine years here, Reyes has captivated the hearts of many fans. However, it’s not like it’s without precedence.

Back in 1990, the Mets faced the same issue when Darryl Strawberry fled New York to take his talents to La La Land. Strawberry devastated a fanbase that adored him ever since he came up through the farm system.

One man doesn’t make a team. The Mets will still report to Port St. Lucie in February for spring training and we will move forward. It’s what we do.

These are trying times no doubt, with ownership continually letting down the fans. Let’s, though, trust Sandy Alderson and put some stock in his vision. We have to put faith the process that he has a plan to make the Mets relevant in the near future.

As fans, we have to be prepared to take Reyes’ possible departure on the chin. I’m not saying it’s going to be easy, but let’s not treat his departure as apocalyptic either. The sun will rise in the morning. And taking a cue from last year’s mantra after the Madoff scandal, I’ll leave you with this:  Keep calm and carry on.

7 comments for “No time to sulk if Reyes leaves Mets

  1. t agee
    November 10, 2011 at 10:24 am

    The time to have resigned Reyes was in ST 2010. He had shown his hamstring was in good shape and the thyroid thing didn’t appear to be an long term problem and with two years to go before free agency 5/85 starting in 2011 with the option changed to a player one and moved from 2011 to 2016 would have guaranteed Jose 100 M and kept him here throughout his prime.

    Typical Mets, never planning ahead. Solely concerned with this year, every year so the money gets spent once again on LF. A position we could have filled in house a lot better, not to mention cheaper and used that money for a guy who has played well for US for a change instead of paying someone for what they did elsewhere, and watching him stink up the joint.

    The second I heard what Crawford I knew it was less than 50/50 with Reyes but you bring up a good point with Strawberry. We were very lucky we didn’t sign him as Darryl really disintegrated after signing the big deal. If Jose leaves I wish him the best and hope he has a great 2nd half of his career but mostly I wish the Mets would stop avoiding players in their prime.

  2. Chris F
    November 10, 2011 at 11:16 am

    Dan,

    Well written and exactly what Ive been talking about personally with my crew. The Mets will survive, and some day flourish again, with or without JR. And I have a better feeling about Ruben Tejada than most. Lets check back in a few years time!!

    Chris

  3. NormE
    November 10, 2011 at 11:28 am

    Dan,
    I, too, agree. Too many Mets fans look at the team through rose-colored glasses and believe that with the addition of one or two
    players the Mets would be a World Series contender. This team has too many holes, too many untested players and not enough
    money to truly be a contender.
    Of course, a great start would be for Bud Selig to force the Wilpons to sell.

  4. jerseymet
    November 10, 2011 at 11:41 am

    Jose thanks for the memories. Good luck!

  5. Joe Gomez
    November 10, 2011 at 2:27 pm

    “By the way, in those three years, who was playing shortstop for the majority of the time? Jose Reyes. The same player many Mets’ fans are obsessing to keep”

    The most stupid argument when it comes to assessing Jose’s value. Jose by himself is NOT going to make the Mets winners. He will make a good team way better but he cannot make the Mets winners by himself.

    Some writers forget to mention that on the Mets team we had failures by the BP, Bay, Wright, Ike was hurt, Murphy got hurt, Beltran got traded and Pelfrey was his usual unreliable self. But Jose is the reason the Mets were a bad team sense the only thing he did was win the NL batting title and was the NL best player for most of the season. Brilliant. That was not enought for guys like you?

    What you should have said was that Jose was the only reason to go to the ballpark and if he is not there next season, the attendance will go down another 20%.

    Take him out of the Mets lineup and tell us why anyone should spend the money to watch a game at Citi-Field. Please enlighten us.

    • Dan Stack
      November 11, 2011 at 8:30 am

      Thanks for commenting all.

      Joe,

      When you said :
      The most stupid argument when it comes to assessing Jose’s value. Jose by himself is NOT going to make the Mets winners. He will make a good team way better but he cannot make the Mets winners by himself.

      I agree, that’s why if we have Reyes or not, the Mets will still be mediocre. Everyone is accountable for the last three years- no doubt!

      Like I said, I want Reyes back, but with our without him, the Mets are not going to go anywhere in the next year or two. I wish it wasn’t, but I think that’s the reality.

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