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Tag:Precious
Posted on: February 22, 2010 2:21 pm
 

Rehabbing with Jose Reyes

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- Working with Mets doctors and rehabilitation specialists, shortstop Jose Reyes spent the winter in New York making sure his hamstring healed properly.

"I only went [home] to the Dominican Republic for two weeks, at Christmas," Reyes said during a discussion the other day. "It was hard. My family is very important, but this is very important for me. I depend on it for my game."

The rehab culiminated last week, when Reyes arrived in Port St. Lucie on Monday and began running outside on real grass for the first time since tearing his hamstring last summer.

"It's been better than I expected," he said. "It's been very good. Nothing to worry about."

It was something to worry about a few months ago, mainly in the immediate aftermath of the surgery.

"The first two weeks after the surgery there was a little concern because my leg felt weak," Reyes said. "I said I want to work hard and I know I'm going to be fine, and I've been doing that the past three months. And now I'm ready to go.

"I'm real glad with the work I did with the guys in New York."

He started running four or five weeks ago, he said, and it felt good when he did because he was a little scared of what might happen.

"You have to get that explosion in your first few steps," he said. "For the first month or two, that's always in your mind when you're running."

Reyes says he believes his problem last summer was that he tried to come back too soon, feeling a responsibility to return "because we have so many injuries."

As the summer wore on, he said he became so depressed at his mounting count of games missed that he reached a point where he couldn't even watch the Mets on television.

Now, he's back running on the Technicolor grass, moving fluidly to his right and ranging left into the hole to field grounders and, in a related development, smiling big.

There's no more concern when he runs, he says. The only difference is in his preparation.

At the direction of the medical staff, he warms up hard before stepping onto the field with a routine of stretching and riding an indoor stationary bicycle. It is a routine he will continue before every game this season, he says.

Otherwise, "I'm just trying to get ready for the season. I don't see big-league pitchers in a long time. I have to get ready, get back into baseball shape."

Sunblock Day? Sure is. Temperature zooming up to 80. Even avoided the rain that was supposed to hit the eastern side of Florida.

Likes: Don't look now, Mets fans, but manager Jerry Manuel and his staff were thrilled at Oliver Perez's first live bullpen of the spring the other day. What really struck Manuel is that Perez's foot was consistently landing in the same place on the mound upon his delivery. Ace Johan Santana was in the group and pointed that out to Perez as well. When Oliver is on, as we've seen, he can be nasty. But he's never graduated from diamond-in-the-rough status because he's never been able to harness his mechanics. Often, his landing foot hits the ground in different places upon his delivery. It's no coincicdence that Hall of Famer Sandy Koufax spent time with Perez on Monday. ... Veteran Kelvim Escobar, in camp fighting for a bullpen job, says he thinks his shoulder is advanced enough that he has a chance to be ready for opening day. Escobar always has been a class act, I wish him well. ... Good move by Mets GM Omar Minaya in hiring Wayne Krivsky, the former Reds GM and assistant GM in Minnesota and Texas, as an adviser during the offseason. ... The Oscars are coming, and you can do a whole lot worse than seeing Precious. It's depressing, yes, but it is really well done. ... I can honestly say Le Tub has not lost its burger magic. Had a chance to visit my favorite place the other afternoon, dinner in a driftwood booth on the Intracoastal waterway in the hot late afternoon sun while the boats cruised past. Terrific burger, as usual. There's one pound of meat in those bad boys.

Dislikes: Really hate to see Khalil Greene not show up to Texas' camp because of a return of his anxiety issues. Greene is a good kid who once was a terrific player. I hope he can get his issues resolved and join the Rangers soon. His 2009 manager, Tony La Russa, grimaced when told the news Monday morning. La Russa expressed dismay that he hadn't yet phoned Greene to wish him well with Texas, something he's been planning to do.

Rock 'N' Roll Lyric of the Day:

"Pale invaders and tanned crusaders
"Are worshipping the sun
"On the corner of 'walk' and 'don't walk'
"Somewhere on US 1
"I'm back to livin' Floridays
"Blue skies and ultra-violet Rays
"Lookin' for better days"

-- Jimmy Buffett, Floridays

Posted on: January 6, 2010 5:47 pm
 

Hall of Fame election, random thoughts

A few final random thoughts on Wednesday's Hall of Fame election results:

-- Though falling five votes short of election surely is agonizing, Wednesday also should be heartening for Bert Blyleven. At 74.2 percent of the vote and with two more years of eligibility, Blyleven -- who looked like a longshot a few years ago -- almost certainly is a lock.

And incidentally, you should have heard what Hall of Famer Hank Aaron said of Blyleven on Sirius/XM radio's MLB Home Plate channel Wednesday morning during an interview with hosts Seth Everett and Jim Duquette:

"I hit against him and if there was a finer pitcher than he was then, I don't know who it was," Aaron said. "I only went to bat maybe 10 or 15 times [against Blyleven]. I don't think I ever got a hit off of him. But he was quite a pitcher.

"I know that he didn't win 20 games, but sometimes you don't need to win 20. I think it's just a matter of how you carried yourself and what you did for your other teammates. Just to have him in that rotation for that many years with Minnesota, [he] was somebody that you didn't look forward to hitting against."

Aaron wasn't too far off in his memory. Lifetime, he was 0 for 7 against Blyleven with one strikeout.

-- I didn't expect former Cincinnati shortstop Barry Larkin to make it, though I do think he's deserving and I did vote for him. Within that, I thought his vote total would have been higher than 51.6 percent (he finished fifth).

-- In what essentially was the first true test of a designated hitter's place in the Hall, former Seattle DH Edgar Martinez notched only 36.2 percent of the vote, which placed him seventh overall.

A day earlier, during his retirement announcement, this is what Randy Johnson had to say about his former Seattle teammate's Hall of Fame chances: "I'm hoping he gets a lot of consideration. I know it's been debated whether a DH is worthy. During my time, I've never seen a better pure hitter than him.

"That's no disrespect to any teammates I've had or played against. I think anybody would agree who watched Edgar during that era how good he was. I'll be pulling for him because of what he meant while I was on the mound."

-- Tim Raines's 30.4 percent of the vote is ludicrously low. The guy reached base more times and scored more runs than Tony Gwynn. He wasn't anywhere near the hitter that Gwynn was, but Raines, together with Rickey Henderson, changed the way the leadoff slot in the lineup was viewed.

-- Glad to see Jack Morris' vote total increase to 52.3 percent (from 44 percent last year), but he's still way too far off for my liking. People need to get over his 3.90 ERA and look at the rest of his game. Nobody was more dominant than Morris throughout the 1980s and early 1990s.

-- The near-misses this year -- Blyleven and Alomar -- also will have their chances increase dramatically in the near future because the next two Hall of Fame classes just aren't very good.

Next year, among the names that come onto the ballot for the first time are Jeff Bagwell, John Franco, Kevin Brown, Rafael Palmeiro, Larry Walker and Juan Gonzalez.

In 2012, it's even worse: Bernie Williams, Ruben Sierra and Tim Salmon are the biggest names who come eligible.

Likes: Andre Dawson is a class act and a deserving Hall of Famer. ... Matt Holliday back in St. Louis. ... The film Precious. ... The DVD Revolutionary Road. ... Wilco (The Album). ... Lyle Lovett's Natural Forces. ... The shift in focus to college basketball in January. ... My wife's homemade pizza, on deck this Thursday night while the college football national title game between Alabama and Texas is played. ... Former Los Angeles Times rock critic Robert Hilburn's memoir Cornflakes with John Lennon. Some great stories and behind the scenes stuff. ... John Meacham's American Lion: Andrew Jackson and the White House, an excellent biography. ... Alicia Keys doing a version of Empire State of Mind on Stephen Colbert's show last month with Colbert rapping about the suburbs. Very amusing.

Dislikes: Christmas vacation is finished already?

Rock 'N' Roll Lyric of the Day:

"Come on children, you're acting like children
"Every generation thinks it's the end of the world
"All you fat followers get fit fast
"Every generation thinks it's the last
"Thinks it's the end of the world"

-- Wilco, You Never Know

 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com