Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Why Reyes is MVP

Jose Reyes returned to the Mets lineup Tuesday night. What a difference a day makes. The addition of Reyes completely changes the dynamic of the Mets team and their lineup. Just a day before the Mets trotted out what looked like the worst lineup in baseball. But add Reyes and all of a sudden mediocre becomes competitive.

How can one player make this much of a difference? It's the same thing that guys named Rickey Henderson and Vince Coleman used to do. They get on base. They cause havoc. They create runs.

When you have someone you know you can slot in the lead off spot every single day, it allows the rest of your lineup to be a bit more robust. It let Collins move Pagan to the middle of the lineup, where he had success earlier this year. It makes Justin Turner in the #2 spot a better hitter as he sees a lot more fastballs. Simply, it makes the Mets a more dynamic team.

The Mets don't have this with Beltran. They don't have it with Wright either. Neither of those guys make enough of an impact in the lineup on their own like Reyes. Reyes' statistical successes this year are unmatched. At this point in the season, he is easily the National League MVP.

By the time October rolls around, Reyes may not be leading the league in hitting. He might be second in stolen bases, but he'll be close to the top in hits, doubles, triples and runs scored. But beyond the stats there is no player that is more valuable to their team than Reyes is to the Mets.

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