Before the game, Reyes said he was "very excited to head back to Shea" With a beaming smile and an air of self-confidence that can only come from success, Reyes explained that he felt no pain in his legs. When asked if he felt any pain in his back or tightness in his hamstring he grinned and responded "I'll try and steal a few bases tonight."
At 21, Reyes has already suffered some serious leg injuries and had back troubles. The Mets, in an effort to combat these problems, have attempted to change Reyes' mechanics when he runs, effectively altering how he runs. "They say the way I run hurts my hamstring. They tell me some small changes and it helped." Like most of us, Reyes has been running since he was three years old, so this was no easy task. However, Mets coaching staff has pronounced the task complete and only time will tell if it has truly made a difference.
Despite all the injury problems he's had and the fact that they've altered his stride, Reyes hasn't lost any of his aggressiveness on the base paths. "Yeah, I feel fine" and he shrugged his shoulders as if there could be no doubt that he would be making opposing catchers miserable for a long time to come. Reyes, certainly didn't appear to lose any of his aggressiveness as he stole second base in the first inning which made him 3 for 3 in stolen base attempts in AA.
Reyes is expected to be at Shea on Saturday though he may not play until Sunday. He has not played a major league game since late August so his timing is a concern. "We'll see how I feel. I'm just down here one more game to hit a little bit. I mean even if I go for 0-6 tonight, I don't care." Another concern is that the he will be learning a new position. On top of that, Reyes has not played one game with SS Kaz Matsui. "We work a little in practice but when I got injured, because of my back and my foot I didn't work with him at all. I stay with the Dr."
Reyes has been working hard at second base during his rehab assignments albeit without his future double play partner and neither he nor any of the Mets' coaching staff seem worried at all about him taking on the new position. "Yeah, I do everything at second base. I've taken grounders and throw a lot. I'm ready to go!"
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