Reyes impacts Marlins in many ways
December, 5, 2011
By Jim Bowden | ESPN.com
AP Photo/Kathy KmonicekJose Reyes will impact the Miami Marlins with his bat, glove and personality.
With the signing of free-agent Jose Reyes to a six-year, $106 million contract on Sunday, the Miami Marlins netted themselves the one of the best shortstops in baseball, second only to the Colorado Rockies' Troy Tulowitzki. It also gives the new-look Marlins much-needed dose of star power.
From a baseball sense, Reyes is a terrific fielder. He has great range to his left and boasts one of the strongest arms at the position. His high energy and enthusiasm will positively influence Hanley Ramirez on the field and in clubhouse. Though there has been talk that Ramirez would head to center field, a team source confirmed that Ramirez will go to third base, with Emilio Bonafacio and Chris Coghlan sharing time in center field. Reyes is also one of baseball's best leadoff hitters, and he should activate a lineup that has lacked decent pop and on-base percentage at the top of the lineup.
Risk? Certainly any time a team signs a player to a long-term contract there is some inherent risk in the latter years as the player ages. Reyes has already had a history of injury, but working in the Marlins' favor is the fact that Reyes is entering his prime years physically, so the next six years should be as good if not better than the first six.