Jose Reyes: Why Is He Not Getting On Base Or Running?

Wendy AdairAnalyst IApril 29, 2009

NEW YORK - APRIL 19:  Jose Reyes #7 of the New York Mets at bat against the Milwaukee Brewers at Citi Field on April 19, 2009 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City.  (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)

Jose Reyes is one of the premier speedsters in the Major Leagues, but so far this season, he has been pretty much neutralized by opposing pitchers.

To his credit, like David Wright and Carlos Beltran, Reyes is out there every day grinding it out, but he definitely seems to have lost some of his spark.

In order for the Mets to be succesful, they need all three of them getting on base and running agressively, but not to the point of recklessness.  All three have excellent speed and, with Citi Field not being a home run hitters park, the running game is crucial.

Much has been written about David Wright's alarmingly high strikeouts, which is understandable, but he has been accountable for it and is clearly working hard to reduce those numbers under Howard Johnson's and Jerry Manuels' supervision each day. 

Reyes seems to be shying away from being interviewed and many fans are starting to get concerned about Reyes not getting on base and when he does, he is not running, doing the little things that add up like going from first to third on a single. 

He has four stolen bases so far, the same amount of David Wright, who is not as fast but does show aggression and taking the extra base.

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Reyes has 10 strikeouts himself, three of them in last night's game, and although he has a .351 OBP, this is not a good sign for a leadoff hitter.

As the leadoff hitter, Reyes needs to get on base regularly and set up the middle of the lineup to drive him home. 

With Wright struggling (although he is driving in runs a little more regularly the last few days), and Delgado injured, that leaves most of the RBI opportunities to Carlos Beltran and Gary Sheffield.

Although the Mets are first-inning run generators, neither Reyes or Wright seem to be participants.  This tells a lotlast season the two combined their speed and power to generate most of the first-inning runs.  Reyes would get on, steal second, and Wright would either single, hit a home run,  or hit a sacrifice fly with Reyes on third base.

The next few weeks will be very telling for this Mets team in a lot of areas, but the basepath issues are as glaring as the offensive struggles with RISP.  The hitters are getting on base, but are not scoring as they should be and they have drawn a lot of criticism for hitting into double plays and leaving runners stranded.

Some of the double plays could have been avoided with the runners at first base getting a good jump, especially if there is a runner on third and a ground ball gets the run home.

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