Jose Reyes told reporters Saturday that his oblique muscle is still sore, and according to Adam Rubin of ESPNNewYork.com, he said that a return to the starting lineup on Sunday is unrealistic.
Reyes hasn’t played since tweaking the oblique muscle on his right side during batting practice at Hiram Bithorn Stadium in Puerto Rico on Wednesday. The speedy shortstop took groundballs before Friday’s game against the Nationals, but according to David Lennon of New York Newsday, he is doing no activity at all on Saturday.
It’s easy to take the whole “here we go again route” with how the Mets are handling this situation — especially after the hemming and hawing regarding his thyroid condition during spring training — but oblique injuries send players to the disabled list on a regular basis. The initial diagnosis of the injury was muddied by semantics, but we shouldn’t be surprised if he needs a few days off.
Ultimately, it’s a touch and feel thing. Reyes could be just fine for Monday’s game against the Reds. Then again, he might not. Besides, I doubt many Mets fans would have a problem if they just shut him down through the All-Star break if that means the injury would be fully healed in time for the second half. Seeing Alex Cora in the lineup isn’t fun — last night’s three-run triple notwithstanding — but there’s too much to lose by rushing Reyes back out there.
With a fourth-inning solo home run off of Phillies starter Jake Thompson, Mets outfielder Curtis Granderson reached the 30-homer plateau for the fourth time in his 13-year career. It’s a moment worth celebrating, only there’s one problem: he has just 56 RBI on the season.
There are many reasons for the low RBI total. 24 of Granderson’s 30 homers have come with the bases empty. He came into Sunday’s action hitting just .140 in 124 plate appearances with runners in scoring position and .197 with runners on base. He has hit leadoff for most of the season, meaning he’s had the Mets’ pitchers hitting “ahead” of him in the No. 9 slot as well as the Mets’ catchers typically hitting eighth. Mets catchers, collectively, have a .296 on-base percentage, the second-worst mark in the National League.
Since the end of August, Granderson has hit cleanup with Jose Reyes, Asdrubal Cabrera, and Yoenis Cespedes hitting in front of him. That change hasn’t been for naught, as he has 17 RBI in 21 games since.
Still, Granderson is on pace for the fewest RBI in a 30-homer season. Rob Deer and Felix Mantilla are tied for the record with 64 RBI. Deer (32 HR) accomplished the feat in 1992 with the Tigers and Mantilla (30 HR) in 1964 with the Red Sox. Only eight players have had 70 or fewer homers in a 30-homer season. Evan Gattis is currently sitting on 30 homers with 68 RBI.
Following the announcement of the 24-year-old’s death, Major League Baseball observed a moment of silence for José Fernández before each of today’s games. While this afternoon’s Marlins-Braves game was cancelled out of respect for the organization, Miami painted Fernández’s jersey number on the mound in honor of their former pitcher.
Other teams, like the Mets, Mariners, and Dodgers, chose to honor Fernández by hanging his No. 16 jersey in their dugout:
Bob Nightengale of USA Today Sports reports that David Ortiz‘s pregame retirement ceremony at Tropicana Field was canceled at the player’s request:
The Astros and Diamondbacks each displayed a personal tribute to Fernández, writing the number 16 on their caps and etching his number and initials in the bullpen:
Rest in peace, Fernández.