Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Reyes Thinks Like a Leadoff Man

From The NY Post:

"I have to get on base, man," Reyes said. "That's the most important thing. When it was two strikes, I have to put the ball in play, no matter what happens."

We like. We really, really like. No one doubts his speed- 17 triples and 60 stolen bases in 2005. I mean, this guy is fast. And exciting to watch on the bases. He's a 22-year old starting shortstop, and just had his first full injury-free season. There's a lot to get excited about.

But 27 walks and a .300 on-base percentage as a leadoff hitter? Ooof. The ability to walk, and a good eye for the strike zone, are notoriously hard to teach. If Reyes can even nominally improve at getting on base, though (and stay healthy- two BIG if's), he will strike fear in opposing pitchers. However, as long as he shows a tendency to hack at junk, and a penchant for popping the ball up, the Mets will continue to have one of the more worthless (albeit exciting) leadoff hitters in the league.

Keep up the good eye Jose!

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"I've had a pretty good success facing Stan (Musial) by throwing him my best pitch and backing up third base."
- Carl Erskine