Jose Reyes has hit zero triples and attempted just one stolen base in 16 games since returning from the disabled list late last month and the Mets shortstop admitted to Adam Rubin of ESPN New York that his injured hamstring is not at full strength:
Earlier in the season it was healthy. It’s not the same now because I just come off of the disabled list. I don’t want to blow out my leg running like crazy out there. If I feel good, I’ll run like crazy. But right now my leg is not where it needs to be. It’s good enough to play, to be on the field. So I give you everything that I have.
Much of Reyes’ value comes from his outstanding speed, as he stole 34 bases and hit a league-leading 16 triples in 98 games before the injury, but it’s tough to fault him for being cautious with the Mets out of the playoff picture and free agency right around the corner. Plus, he’s generally played well since coming off the DL, hitting .308 with a .366 on-base percentage and limited power.
Oft-injured pitcher Josh Johnson is retiring from baseball, ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick is reporting.
Johnson, 32, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2013. The right-hander underwent his third Tommy John surgery in September 2015 but wasn’t able to bounce back.
Johnson spent most of his career with the Marlins, but also pitched for the Blue Jays in the big leagues, as well as the Padres in the minors. He retires with a career 3.40 ERA, 915 strikeouts across 998 innings in the majors, and two All-Star nominations. Johnson led the National League with a 2.30 ERA in 2010, finishing fifth in NL Cy Young Award balloting. One wonders what he could have accomplished if he was able to stay healthy.
The Angels are nearing a multi-year deal with free agent third baseman Luis Valbuena, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. It’s believed to be a two-year contract with a third-year option.
Valbuena, 31, hit .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances in 2016. He missed most of the second half with a hamstring injury, for which he underwent surgery in late August.
Valbuena has played a majority of his career at third base, but also has extensive experience at second base and has racked up innings at first base and shortstop as well. He won’t play every day for the Angels, as Yunel Escobar lays claim to third base and C.J. Cron first base, but he will give them flexibility and a left-handed bat off the bench.