If you recall, Jose missed most of the 2009 season (who didn't?) and eventually underwent surgery to repair a torn hamstring tendon in his right leg. Listening to Reyes now, he appears ready to start the season today instead of April 5th.
“I feel great. Last year I came back too quickly. Everything is in the past. I don’t want to think about it. Now there is no pain. That’s the key. There is nothing to worry about. Everything’s perfect. I’ll be ready in 2010. Be there, it’s going to be a show.”
In addition to his running exercises, Reyes fielded ground balls hit to his left and right to test his mobility He also did some weightlifting and some hitting.
After each test, Jose flashed his trademark smile that had not been seen since Shea Stadium was still alive. In fact, the picture to the right might be the only photo known to man of Reyes smiling at Citi Field.
Mets' executive VP David Howard was at Monday's session and lame duck (with the accent on lame) general manager Omar Minaya watched Reyes work out last week. Both were pleased with the shortstop's progress. No one seemed to care where the Wilpons (Mutt and Jeff) were during Reyes' training session.
Stupid is as stupid does.
The 2009 season marked the third time Reyes had missed extensive playing time due to injuries. After missing large chunks of the 2003 and 2004 seasons, Reyes played his first healthy season in 2005.
From 2005-2008 (all seasons in which Reyes did not get hurt), Jose's fleet feet helped him score an average of 113 runs per season. The other "speed stats" were phenomenal as well, as Reyes hit a total of 65 triples and pilfered 258 bases, both tops in the major leagues over that four-year period.
Despite the fact that Reyes was pulled from the game during Jerry Manuel's first game as Mets manager in 2008 because of injury concerns, the skipper has professed admiration for his leadoff hitter and knows how crucial Reyes is to setting the table for the sluggers behind him. With a healthy Reyes at the top of the order, the Mets should improve on their 12th place finish in runs scored in the National League.
In 1994, we all screamed "Run, Forrest, Run" at the movie screen. (Some of us screamed it too loudly and were ejected from the movie theater faster than Bobby Cox at an umpire's convention.) Sixteen years later, after Jose Reyes proclaimed himself 100% healthy and ready to give Mets fans a show, it's time to scream "Run, Jose, Run!"
I'm willing to bet a shrimpin' boat full of Dr. Pepper that as long as Jose Reyes keeps on running for the duration of the long 162-game season, all other chips will fall into place.
With a healthy Jose Reyes, the Mets should improve upon their buttocks-ugly 70-92 record from last year. Now if Reyes could only pitch...