Jose Reyes took a while to knock the rust off after missing major league action for nearly a year, then sitting out three weeks of spring training with a thyroid scare. But the shortstop now appears on track.
Reyes went 3-for-5 with two steals and three runs scored in the Mets’ 8-0 win against the Philadelphia Phillies on Tuesday.
His first-inning single was his 1,000th career hit. It came in his 833rd game, making him the quickest to that plateau in franchise history. David Wright, who reached 1,000 hits on April 27, took 868 games.
“I think he felt at some point last week that he finally got his legs underneath him,” manager Jerry Manuel said. “I think that had a lot to do with the inability to hit like he wanted to. Now we’re seeing the balls being driven in the gap and hard line drives and bunts for base hits.”
Said Reyes: “The last two or three weeks I’ve been feeling very good with my legs. … I told Luis (Castillo) every day, ‘I can’t wait to get on base two or three times in the game because my leg feels so good now.’”
SECOND TAKE: Castillo limped badly while leaving the clubhouse late Tuesday, but played a complete game and went 1-for-4 with an RBI. (He was credited with a sacrifice bunt in the first inning, although it appeared he was bunting for a hit and was given another generous scoring ruling, which artificially boosts his average.)
Afterward, Castillo suggested a different tape job and new orthotic device helped do the trick with his ailing left foot, which has a bone bruise on the bottom. Castillo twice had been scratched from weekend games against the Yankees.
“I’m OK,” Castillo insisted. “I feel better.”
ODDS & ENDS: Jason Bay went 1-for-5 with two RBIs. He now has a 16-game home hitting streak. According to ESPN Stats & Information, that’s six shy of matching Edgardo Alfonzo’s 1997 franchise record. Angel Pagan has the Citi Field record, with a 19-game home hitting streak last season. … Ex-Met Nelson Figueroa was charged with three runs in the eighth inning. … Catcher Rod Barajas went 2-for-4 against his former team. He’s now hitting .552 (16-for-29) with seven homers and 15 RBIs in nine games against Philadelphia since departing. … Right fielder Jeff Francoeur snapped an 0-for-12 skid with his second-inning single and finished 2-for-3 with two RBIs. Francoeur also had an 0-for-20 stretch this month. He upped his average to .219. … Daniel Murphy played first base and went 1-for-4 in his first game for Triple-A Buffalo. Once the knee issues are clearly behind him, Murphy will begin to play other positions with the Bisons. … The Mets improved to 17-9 at home this season.