NEW YORK -- What seemed like an inevitable reunion came to fruition Thursday, when the Mets agreed to terms on a one-year contract with infielder Jose Reyes. The deal is worth $2 million, plus $500,000 in incentives. The Mets confirmed the signing on Friday afternoon.Back in New York, Reyes will
NEW YORK -- What seemed like an inevitable reunion came to fruition Thursday, when the Mets agreed to terms on a one-year contract with infielder Jose Reyes. The deal is worth $2 million, plus $500,000 in incentives. The Mets confirmed the signing on Friday afternoon.
Back in New York, Reyes will serve as a substitute at second base, shortstop and third, and potentially even the outfield, if necessary. Although the Mets do not have a clear starting second baseman on their current roster, a source said they remain interested in signing one before Spring Training.
"I'm glad to be back," Reyes said in a statement. "This is my home. I'm excited to be back with a great group of teammates. I will do everything I can to help us get back to the postseason."
Neil Walker and Eduardo Nunez remain free-agent options, as does third baseman Todd Frazier, who would shift Asdrubal Cabrera over to second. The Mets have also checked in on Pirates second baseman Josh Harrison, though he remains more of a long shot.
Regardless of who the Mets acquire, Reyes adds depth. As a 34-year-old last season, he led the team in games and plate appearances, largely as a result of injuries to others. Reyes batted .246 with a .728 OPS, 15 homers and 24 stolen bases.
Reyes also served as a mentor to Amed Rosario, the Mets' top prospect last year and their starting shortstop heading into Spring Training. The Mets maintained interest in Reyes throughout this offseason, largely for that reason.
Reyes likewise expressed consistent interest in returning to the Mets, his team from 2003-11. A five-time All-Star and the Mets' all-time leader in triples and steals, Reyes departed via free agency following the 2011 season, but returned in '16 after serving a suspension for violating Major League Baseball's joint domestic violence, sexual assault and child abuse policy.
The Mets retained Reyes' rights into last season and, at the end of it, he vocally expressed a desire to return. He keeps his offseason home on Long Island and wants to retire a Met.
"I never wanted to leave New York, but unfortunately that happened," Reyes said at the end of last season. "Now, I'm at the end of my career. I'd love to end my career here as a New York Met."
The Mets' Opening Day bench appears all but set with Reyes, Wilmer Flores, Kevin Plawecki and Brandon Nimmo, and possibly one more player, if the Mets use a seven-man bullpen instead of eight. There has been internal debate over the bullpen size in recent weeks, but considering the Mets' desire to lean more heavily on their relievers, an eight-man 'pen and four-man bench appear to be the most likely options.
Anthony DiComo has covered the Mets for MLB.com since 2008. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo and Facebook.