Print and Go Back ESPN.com: New York Mets [Print without images]

Saturday, September 24, 2011
TC notes: Jose, rotation, Tejada, wildcard

By Matt Ehalt


Mets shortstop Jose Reyes said he was told that he will just play the first game of Saturday's doubleheader. Reyes said that he feels good, but for now, will play just the first game with a day game on tap for the series finale Sunday. Manger Terry Collins said Reyes told him he wants to play both games.

"We'll see what happens in the first one and we'll go from there," Reyes said.

Collins said he is keeping an eye on all the statistics for the batting crown, as Reyes entered today tied with Ryan Braun for the NL batting title with a .329 average.

“I get the stats every day, and so I look at them every day just to see how far he’s behind or how far he’s ahead," Collins said. "Of course, the big news is Matt Kemp is creeping into this thing. I think the only thing you worry about is Jose. If he gets hits, it doesn’t matter where the other guys are, unless they keep getting hits. With the Brewers clinching last night, I don’t know what Braun’s status is going to be in the next day or so, if he’s going to play. I just worry about Jose getting some knocks.”

ROTATION: Collins said that Miguel Batista is likely to start the season finale against the Reds, while Saturday's starter R.A. Dickey and Sunday's starter Mike Pelfrey would be in the bullpen.

TEJADA THE FUTURE?: With Reyes possibly leaving town at the end of the year, Collins said Saturday's he's preparing himself to look at Ruben Tejada in two lights: one as a potential second baseman with Reyes coming back and one as the shortstop if Reyes decides to depart. In the case of the former, he said he'd have to look at what the best options are and that would be a decision to make in spring training.

Collins did say he doesn't think Tejada's performance this year can be considered a "blip." He's hitting .280 with zero home runs and 35 RBIs entering Saturday.

"He's played too well too many times this summer," Collins said of his play not being a blip. "Yes, he's gone though the fatigue factor at one time like everybody else. One of the things we've tried to do this month with everybody here is to give him a little bit of rest. But what we've seen is this guy growing and getting better with each and every month there. I think the experience factor is just helping him become a better offensive player, for sure. There's no reason  why I think he can't continue to grow on what he's doing now."

APPROVAL: With reports that baseball will add teams to the playoffs, Collins said he approves of adding teams to the race.

"I just think it's a great idea having more teams have a chance," Collins said.