I've watched or taped several live baseball events recently, but today was the first one in some time that did not involve apologies or cousins. There was an honest-to-goodness game on! And the Mets beat the Marlins, 9-0. Didn't make up for how they played against the Marlins at the end of last season, but it was great to see the Mets out on the field again, at the dawn of a new season filled with hope.
When Willie Randolph tried to tone down Jose Reyes, the Met shortstop went into a slump. But Jerry Manuel seems to have found the right words to inspire Reyes, or should I say the right music:
"I love the energy that Jose Reyes brings, but I don't always like the anxiety that comes with it. I want to calm that down. He needs to play at jazz time. And he's playing at a hip-hop level. I want him to the best jazz player he can be."
Comparing Reyes to jazz is almost as odd as batting him third. Does this mean his at-bat music will now be "Take Five" by Dave Brubeck?
Instead of singing "Jose, Jose, Jose," will Met fans instead perform jazz hands?
Then again, Reyes did hit two homers and drive in six while batting third today. That's something to get jazzed about.
True, it's only the second day of spring training, and Reyes was hitting in his usual spot after the pitcher, since Manuel batted Oliver Perez second to make sure he would get a time at bat.
And Johan Santana has been scratched from his next start due to elbow soreness.
But there was a ballgame on today. Baseball is back!