On A Cold Night In Brooklyn, Reyes Learns The Hot Corner

Jose Reyes’ second night in Brooklyn with the Cyclones was marked by learning the trickery of third base and what he has to do to grasp it on his way back to the Mets.

Third base is possibly the toughest position in the infield, in terms of having to deal with some of the hardest hits, and the amount of ground that has to be covered.

Reyes experienced how fast a liner can come at him at the hot corner when a rocket from Hudson Valley’s Johnathan Popadics got by him to open the fifth inning.

“Wow, even a real third baseman would have a tough time catching that one,” said Reyes after the game. “That was quick. That’s why I need a few more games.”

An inning earlier, Reyes experienced what it was like to try to catch a pop-up in the swirling winds on a cold night in Coney Island that brought back memories of Candlestick Park.

With one out in the fourth, Jake Fraley popped one up and Reyes came in close to the mound, took a few steps back, looked like he had it, but ulitmately dropped it. This was not his only chance on a pop-up, as he caught one in the first inning, and it was ironically hit by Fraley.

Reyes is seeking to fill David Wright’s big shoes at third base. Reyes and Wright are forever linked in Mets history, as they anchored the left side of the infield and were the faces of the team from 2004 to 2011, when Reyes left for Miami. Wright was a free agent the same year, and the captain re-signed with the Mets. Now that Wright is down, it is almost natural that Reyes is back in the fold and the one to step in at third base and provide a lift.

“I talked to David four days ago, and I’m planning on calling him tomorrow. He can give me some advice about third base,” Reyes said of Wright.

“It’s crazy. We played so long together on the same side of the field and now you think I’m going to play third base because David is hurt. It’s like, ‘what!’ You never know what’s going to happen in baseball.”

Jose Reyes addresses the media on Monday night. Photo by Anthony Rushing.
Jose Reyes addresses the media on Monday night. Photo by Anthony Rushing.

At the plate, Reyes flew out to left in the first inning, drew a walk in the third, and struck out looking with runners on in the fifth.

Reyes left after seven innings, and the Cyclones went on to stage a late comeback and win 6-5 in 10 innings.

“At the plate, I think I feel a little bit more comfortable,” Reyes said of his at-bats Monday. “I was excited to see live pitching. Yesterday (Sunday) was my first game in two weeks. Like I said, I was a little bit jumpy. Today, I felt more balanced, see a few more pitches, and the more I see, pitching I see in a game, the more comfortable I’ll feel.”

“I’m going to Binghamton, play a few more games” Reyes said of going to the Mets Double-A affiliate in the next step in his rehab. “I want to feel real comfortable about playing the game and about coming up and helping the New York Mets. I don’t want to come up just to be there to be there, I want to help the ballclub right away. That’s why I need a few more games, see what happens.”

“It’s going to go game-by-game and day-by-day, I’m going to know the point I’m ready, I’m going to know that for sure,” Reyes said of goals he is setting in his return. “I’m going to be able to let them know when I’m ready.”


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