MLB Trade Rumors: Seven Reasons The Giants Should Say "No Way Jose (Reyes)"
A season of torturous happiness and excitement was capped off when Aubrey Huff Zoolandered his famed rally thong in front of thousands of overjoyed Giants fans on the steps of City Hall.
As the realization set in, and the splurging on championship gear began for fans, the organization was quickly back to work. At hand was a task completely foreign to San Francisco -- how to defend a championship.
The Giants wasted little time, and for the most part stuck to their word that they would aim to retain most of their World Series-winning roster. Aubrey Huff and his famous red thong will be around through the 2012 season, Pat Burrell will remain a Giant for at least one more season at the bargain bin price of $1 million; utility infielder Mike Fontenot is sticking around, as well as promising relief pitcher Dan Runzler.
Causing the biggest splash so far is the departure of Juan Uribe to the despised Los Angeles Dodgers. While his presence in the locker room will be missed, it is he who will miss the Giants, as he follows the money to an organization whose ownership troubles warrants its own season of Real Housewives of Orange County.
Brought in to cover shortstop for the newly-despised Uribe, one-time Oakland Athletic and perennial All-Star Miguel Tejada signed a one-year, $6.5 million contract. Is Tejada enough for another run at the World Series? Many out there say no. He's just too old, he's past his prime and the Giants need to go young.
A murmur has begun to rumble throughout San Francisco since it was released to the media that the Giants and Mets have held some talks regarding the Mets' popular shortstop Jose Reyes, and the Giants are showing some interest.
While sounding reluctant to trade away Reyes, the Mets' top brass has not counted it out entirely, stating that for the right price anything can happen. Right now, that price seems to include three to four players in return for the star shortstop.
All I have to say is DON"T DO IT! Here's why:
1. He Is Just Too Expensive
In the final year of his contract, Reyes expects to earn $11 million. This is up there in Aaron Rowand and Barry Zito territory, and I don't think Giants fans can endure another blockbuster disappointment.
Not to mention Mets GM Sandy Alderson expects three to four players in return for Reyes. In the case of the Giants, this would likely require cutting ties with a number of treasured players that fill the roster. Pitchers Johnathon Sanchez or Madison Bumgardner would be the heavyweight, with other relievers and prospects to fill in the contract.
I do not see the Giants breaking up the rotation that brought the team a championship before it was supposed to be their time. Sorry Alderson, no deal.
Not to mention the Giants already spent money on the SS position, agreeing to pay Tejada $6.5 million for one season with a possible $500,000 in performance-based incentives.
2. Sign Reyes and You Have To Give The Medical Staff a Raise
While there is the possibility that Reyes can return to his status as one of MLB's elite shortstops, the last two seasons have been filled with injuries and lower than expected performances. In 2009, Reyes played in only 36 games. In 2010, Reyes missed the All-Star game as well as 29 regular season games, due to injuries that many claim have slowed down the notoriously speedy base stealer.
After being questioned by the feds for an alleged association with a doctor linked to performance enhancing drugs, some believe that Reyes' four seasons of injury-free and stellar play may be linked to the use of HGH and his current lack of health may be linked to discontinued use of the drugs.
3. The Giants Have a Leadoff Man In Andres Torres
It is hard to find many glaring differences between Andres Torres and Jose Reyes as lead-off batters.
With nearly the same amount of games played in 2010, Andres Torres had one more run, 14 more doubles, five more home runs, nine more RBIs and 25 more walks than Reyes. On the flip side, Reyes bested Torres with 23 more hits, two more triples, a batting average that at .282 was only 14 points higher than Torres, and as his most favorable stat, 65 less strikeouts.
In 33 attempts,Torres stole safely 26 times (78.8 percent). In comparison, Reyes stole safely 30 times in 40 tries (75 percent). Again, Torres comes out on top.
So if the recent past tells us anything about the future, this costly acquisition would bring the Giants another Torres-type batter (both of which can bat from either side of the plate) which would be nice as a one-two punch, but the value just isn't there at this time.
4. Tejada Is Getting Old, But He Can Still Play
At nearly ten years his senior, Tejada put up numbers similar to Jose Reyes in 2010.
While playing for two separate clubs, Tejada earned a fielding percentage just above Reyes at .978 and played in all but seven games last season. Outside of 2007, the seven missed games was the most for Tejada since 1998, when he became an everyday starter. With 22 more games played in the books last season, Tejada finished with 18 errors, only three more than Reyes.
And while completely hypothetical, there's probably still some magic left inside, even after the amazing 2010 season for the San Francisco Giants. A clubhouse like the Giants is a perfect place for a man like Tejada who plays for the love of the game, and has put his heart and soul into every play his entire career. Like Aubrey Huff and Pat Burrell, there is no place better for a career resurgence.
5. There's Time... Don't Rush Into The Wrong Thing
As long as the Giants' pitching staff, especially the starting rotation, stays intact, the club should be considered World Series contenders for years to come. Management must work in a timely manner to shore up any holes in the Giants' roster, but they should not rush into a decision that will cost more than its worth and has the visible chance of backfiring.
This year’s championship was a treat and a surprise to the Bay Area, but the Giants aren't a one and done team. With a couple of moves they can solidify their place as a team of this decade, but I don't think Reyes is the answer. It's 2010, the decade has just begun and we already have a ring. The Giants should use the time they bought this year by signing Tejada to scope out the market and really entice a talented and young shortstop to the Bay by next season
6. There's Other Options
Both Marco Scutaro and Jason Bartlett are currently available on the market. At this point, it looks like the Giants already got the second best choice after Reyes with Tejada.
Marco Scutaro is 35 and recovering from a rotator cuff injury. While his numbers have been consistent and respectable, he doesn't strike fear in too many MLB pitchers.
Jason Bartlett, a Bay Area native, while no more than an average shortstop, helped lead the Rays to the American League's best record last year. So maybe the 31-year old has some intangibles that can be a positive in the clubhouse as well as on the field. If the price is right, he could be a great option to have if Tejada goes down with an injury or needs a day off.
7. Jose Reyes Might Be All About Jose Reyes
The biggest reason that the San Francisco Giants are World Series champions is because they played for the team and they played to win. There was no superstar with an ego to match pacing the dugout, getting angry when things didn't go his way, or sitting in a Lazy Boy to lace up his cleats.
This was an everyman’s team that cared more about the man playing next to them than about themselves. This team showed a level of unselfishness unheard of in professional sports today, and keeping this atmosphere in the clubhouse will be crucial if the Giants plan to continue to win championships.
While Reyes has never had any blow-ups or mishaps that stand above the rest, he is popular in New York for his showboating and "look at me" antics. He has come up through the Mets' system and has been Mr. Met his entire career. When a young man comes up through the majors being "The Man", it becomes something they expect no matter where they go, and if something changes for the worst, more often than not, they don't take it well, and their reactions can have a negative effect on an entire clubhouse.
While I am sliding down a slippery slope here, I fear that Reyes’ showboating mentality can become a problem in San Francisco if things don't go his way. The Giants need someone who will put the team first, before all else, including himself.