April 13, 2007

Reyes And His Balance

Bob Herzog at Newsday, writes about Jose Reyes and how he has vastly improved himself:

"He's maturing. He's learning," Randolph said.

That was evident last season when he emerged as one of the most dynamic offensive forces in baseball, batting .300 with 17 triples, 19 homers and 81 RBIs. Perhaps the most impressive number was his .354 on-base percentage, an impressive 54-point increase from 2005.

"The first couple of years, he'd swing at a lot of balls out of the zone, which means he wasn't recognizing his pitch," Randolph said. "He's an aggressive hitter and I want him to stay aggressive. He's hitting the ball the other way much more, which means he's letting the ball get deep on him."

That's the first sign of a good leadoff batter. The longer you see the ball, the better chance you have to recognize the pitch and make the smart decision on whether to swing or hold up."I

n his first at-bat last night against lefthanded changeup artist Jamie Moyer, Reyes looped a single to the opposite field and scored the Mets' first run on Carlos Beltran's single. In the fourth, he jumped on a 2-and-1 pitch and pulled a two-run single to left to give the Mets a 4-3 lead. Reyes drew an intentional walk from Moyer in the sixth with a runner on third and one out.

"He's getting better and when he gets it, he's going to really, really be one of the better leadoff guys in the league," said Randolph, ignoring an obvious fact.

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