Jose Reyes has earned right to seek 'Carl Crawford money,' even though Mets don't intend to pay it
Tuesday, June 21st 2011, 4:00 AM
Andrew Theodorakis/NewsMets shortstop Jose Reyes is not negotiating through the media, so his specific desires are unknown. One friend, however, says: 'He's going to get paid. He is clear about that.'
Do not assume that his actions meant he will show the same loyalty to the Mets.
Reyes and his camp have refused to negotiate through the media, responding with classy reserve even when Fred Wilpon told The New Yorker magazine last month that the free-agent-to-be would not receive "Carl Crawford money," and that Reyes had "everything wrong with him." We are not sure what they are seeking, because they will not tell us.
That does not mean, however, that Reyes does not know what he wants, and is not chatting about it with friends. On team flights and in other reporter-free situations, the shortstop is doing what any of us would do with a significant life moment approaching - talking it out.
"He talks about this stuff all the time," said one friend of Reyes. "And if the Mets think they're getting him for, like, $95 million, they're wrong. He's going to get paid. He is clear about that."
Problem is, as of right now at least, there is a disconnect between what the team wants to pay Reyes, and what Reyes expects to receive. This does not make him cynical or materialistic; it makes him a clear-minded capitalist. His performances sell tickets, and owners reap the revenue. As the worker behind those dollars, why shouldn't he claim his share?
Fred Wilpon tells The New Yorker that Jose Reyes will not receive 'Carl Crawford money.' But he may, just likely not with the Mets. (Corey Sipkin/News)
Sources familiar with the Mets' thinking say the team will likely extend what it considers a reasonable offer to Reyes, and hope that Reyes weighs his love for the city, desire to avoid pulling his children out of Long Island schools and loyalty that led him to strand Boras on the dance floor.
Loyalty, though, is situational. One of Reyes' current agents, Chris Leible, is the godfather of two of his children, and a genuine buddy. Neither he, nor his associate Peter Greenberg, has ever criticized Reyes in a major magazine.
"There is no chance I would ever leave those guys," Reyes said Sunday of his agents, repeating thoughts offered the day before while confirming the Fox Sports report that he had spoken with Boras. "I mean, I have been with them since I was 17."
Note that he has said nothing of the sort regarding the Mets, whose fans must have exhaled upon learning that Reyes was not signing with an agent known for seeking the maximum contract for his clients. Surely, that rejection meant that Reyes was more likely to remain a Met than he would have been with Boras.