In his second “last game” for the New York Mets, Jose Reyes ended the year with a batting average nearly 150 points lower than he finished with in 2011.
Nothing is written in stone, but we can safely assume Jose Reyes will not suit up for the New York Mets ever again. His poor 2018 season may even end any chance of playing Major League Baseball. Rightfully so, he brings very little to a major league lineup.
For the second time in a decade, Reyes had a final Mets game. The 2017 performance left some doubt in the air about whether or not he would return, but a new one-year contract ensured he would. This time, the circumstances are much different and there’s not enough spin in the world to justify a return.
Back in 2011, while still in his prime, there was a chance he might stick around with the Mets. Reyes was an upcoming free agent who had just won the batting title. He didn’t know anything other than the blue and orange.
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In the offseason, the Miami Marlins threw a lot of money at Reyes, ending his first tour through New York. He would return again in 2016 in the twilight of his career, serving up a much lighter dish at the plate.
Reyes’ 2011 campaign included a league-best .337 batting average. In 2018, he batted a putrid .189. A day after David Wright left with cheers, Reyes departed with barely a whimper.
The 140+ point drop shows the two sides of Reyes’ career. It’s hard to believe this is the same player once beloved by fans.
I know I’ve heard someone say that within seven years, our cells have all regenerated and changed to some extent, therefore, making us a brand new person. I don’t know how true it is, but based on how Reyes changed, I’m willing to believe what some “know-it-all” in my freshman high school science class would say.
Earlier this year, when it seemed inevitable that Reyes wouldn’t last the full season with the Mets, we learned the front office felt they owed him some more respect. Rather than designate the veteran infielder for assignment and give his roster spot to someone more deserving, they kept him around for all 162 games.
It’s unfortunate that it happened this way. An August departure similar to the way Alex Rodriguez left the New York Yankees would have made sense. Then again, Reyes is convinced his days as a professional baseball player are not over.
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Reyes has his place in Mets history as the greatest shortstop to ever suit up for the franchise. However, this poor ending certainly tarnishes his legacy.