My favorite team in the world is the New York Mets, before any of the other teams I root for its the Mets. A full 1/4 of my t-shirt collection are Mets shirts.
Now, I am at a crossroads as the team prepares to bring back Jose Reyes. On the surface, even if his skills are some what diminished, he is still such a spark offensively and such a natural player that he will thrive defensively at any position you put him at. That stadium was built for his combination of line drive power and blazing speed. And truth be told during his years in Flushing he was in the pantheon of my favorite Mets. Up there with Keith Hernandez, Mike Piazza, Todd Hundley, and Edgardo Alfonzo. Literally in that group. This current Mets team needs a spark, our outstanding pitching staff are killing themselves out there trying to throw shutouts, since this team doesnt score any runs. Reinforcements would be good. Jose Reyes could help.
Here is my dilemma though. Jose Reyes is only available because last Halloween while on vacation with his family he was accused and arrested after a physical fight with his wife. There is a mugshot out there.
As in many domestic violence cases the spouses are reluctant to cooperate with authorities. It is even more common when it involves professional athletes. Former Baltimore Raven Ray Rice was caught on video assualting his then girlfriend (now wife) in an elevator. She did not cooperate with authorities. I'm not sure if it is fear about retribution, or fear of losing a financial lifestyle or something else, but these guys usually don't face legal consequences. Mrs. Reyes didn't cooperate, and the case was dropped.
Major League Baseball suspended Reyes for 50 games. And his team the Colorado Rockies released him after they were unable to find a trade partner, who would be willing to take on a player, with diminising skills, a huge ammount of money owed to him and the reputation of someone who has hit his wife. But desperate for offense, and for a prorated ammount of the league minimum salary the Mets appear to be ready to take that chance.
This will be the second time during my fandom that I have to split the guy on the field from off the field. I will cheer Jose Reyes the player, I will join the thousands of CitiField faithful in boisterous chants of JOSE JOSE JOSE. But I'm not going to wear Jose Reyes t-shirts. I will look at him differently. A lengthy sit down interview with someone from SNY, will not change my opinion on him. There was nothing he can say that will justify what he did. Hopefully he will try to make ammends, raise funds and awareness for domestic violence. But for me, and many others I suspect. That dark cloud of what happened this past October in a Hawaiian resort will always be there.
Jose Reyes did a terrible thing and he is very fortunate to be a rich and famous professional athlete.
Addendum: Jose Reyes re-debutted for the Mets in a 5-2 loss against the Miami Marlins. He went 0-4. He was cheered everytime he came up to bat.