Jose Reyes’ addition paying off now that David Wright’s comeback slowed
JUPITER, Fla. — Jose Reyes’ reunion with the Mets included a team option for this season at the league minimum salary. It was an indication of the uncertainty surrounding David Wright.
On Tuesday, when it was revealed that Wright is battling an impingement in his right shoulder, the Mets wasted little time cashing in on that insurance policy. Manager Terry Collins said that Reyes will step up preparations to be the team’s third baseman on Opening Day.
“I’m very comfortable,” Collins said. “He played great over there. As we talked earlier in camp, [GM Sandy Alderson] put this team together for reasons such as this, for if something happens we’ve got a backup in place. Before we leave camp, all of a sudden, we need that.”
Reyes will play shortstop for the Dominican Republic in the World Baseball Classic. But he has already played one game at third base during the Mets’ exhibition slate. He’s expected to play third on Thursday and Friday.
“I feel very comfortable out there,” said Reyes, who hit .267 in 60 games for the Mets, with all but 10 of his starts coming at third base.
Reyes is still owed $22 million this season from the Rockies, who released him before he re-signed with the Mets last season.
The Mets’ starting rotation rollout begins on Thursday, when Robert Gsellman makes his Grapefruit League debut. He will be followed by Noah Syndergaard on Friday, Jacob deGrom on Saturday, Matt Harvey on Sunday and Steven Matz on Monday.
The Mets had delayed game action as a way to keep their arms healthy.
Travis d’Arnaud continued his strong start to the spring, homering in the Mets’ 3-1 Grapefruit League victory against the Marlins on Tuesday. “It’s nice to see him swinging the bat,” Collins said. “As I’ve said, when you break guys down, you look at their biggest things they bring to the table and he brings offense. If he starts swinging the bat, we’re going to be dangerous.” . . . Michael Conforto struck out three times. But he made a sliding catch in rightfield and popped up in time to throw out Justin Bour as he tried to score . . . RHP Seth Lugo tossed three scoreless innings. He will appear in one more game before joining Puerto Rico’s team for the WBC.