ATLANTA — Though Terry Collins has pledged to keep his regulars in the lineup for the integrity of the wild-card race, the manager bent that rule some for yesterday’s series finale against the Braves.
Collins sat both Jose Reyes and Angel Pagan, but for different reasons. In the case of Reyes, Collins figured it would be a good opportunity to take advantage of today’s off day for an extended rest that would allow him to play straight through the last nine games.
“He wants to finish it out after that,” Collins said. “He thought that would help his legs recuperate a little bit.”
It was the third game Reyes has missed since returning from the disabled list on Aug. 29, his second stint due to a strained left hamstring. In that sense, Collins has made good on his promise of resting Reyes more, and that has helped him to avoid a third trip to the DL, even if the hamstring is not at 100 percent. Reyes did enter as a pinch hitter in the eighth.
As for Pagan, Collins said the centerfielder has been bothered by a right quad issue for a “couple weeks” and could also use the two-day rest. Pagan has taken some curious routes to fly balls lately and been noticeably slower patrolling his space.
“When we’ve talked about it, he wanted to play,” Collins said. “He wanted to be out there. But right now we’ve got to take advantage of the day off.”