The Toronto Blue Jays appear close to announcing their Opening Day roster, according to a recent tweet by Brendan Kennedy of the Toronto Star, with a decision expected to come down Thursday before the team heads to Montreal for their exhibition series with the Mets at Olympic Stadium. The plan may need some revision depending on the status of Jose Reyes.
— Brendan Kennedy (@BKennedyStar) March 23, 2014
Reyes was 1 for 2 with a run scored on Saturday before coming out of the game in the top of the fourth inning with left hamstring tightness. At the time, it was considered a precautionary measure and it is likely that Reyes’ absence from Sunday’s line-up is also just the team playing it safe with their speedy lead-off man.
The Blue Jays are right in being overly cautious in this regard, as Reyes has a history of hamstring issues. In 2004, Reyes missed the entire first half of the season due to a hamstring strain, an injury that prevented him from making his season debut prior to June 19th. Reyes missed all but 36 games of the 2009 season with a calf strain that later resulted in a hamstring tear. He also missed significant time in 2011 due to a strained left hamstring.
In his first season with the Blue Jays, Reyes hit .296 with 10 home runs, 37 RBI, and 15 stolen bases. However, a sever ankle sprain in April limited him to just 93 games on the season and his speed was severely hampered, as evidenced by his low stolen base total and complete lack of any triples.
A return to health and a full season at the top of the line-up is key to a Blue Jays offense that will be trying to compensate for a questionable pitching staff. A few days off will be in the cards for now, with Toronto hoping Reyes will be ready to return before the season opens on