Jose Reyes, out of the Blue Jays lineup since April 13th; is set to make his return to the club on Wednesday, when the Jays take on the Tampa Bay Rays in the third game of their three game series. The Rays took the first game of the series 4-1 last night, ending the Blue Jays major league best winning streak at 11 games.
Reyes acquired in a mega off-season transaction with the Miami Marlins should provide the Jays with a big boost of hitting, speed, and energy at the top of the order upon his return. While Munenori Kawasaki has been a revelation filling in for the injured Reyes, he is still a journeyman shortstop with a limited bat, and Reyes is a former batting champion and all-star. There is little doubt that Reyes return will bolster a lineup that has been tearing the cover off the ball in recent weeks.
Reyes has played in 7 minor league rehab games with the Triple A Buffalo Bisons, and now that he’s gotten himself up to speed, the Blue Jays feel he’s ready to make his return to the big league roster.
Reyes, the 2011 National League Batting Champion, was hitting .395/.465/.526 for the Blue Jays this season. However he has been limited to just 43 plate appearances. His career mark is .292/.343/.440. In 160 games for the Marlins last year, he hit .287/.347/.433 with 37 doubles, 12 triples, 11 homers, 40 steals and 86 runs.
The Blue Jays currently sit 5.5 games back of the Boston Red Sox in the AL East, and only 3 games back in the Wild Card Chase. They will have an opportunity to make up some of that ground in a series with Boston, starting on Thursday.
Photo Credit: Queencitysports.net, cc