The story of the prodigal son is one we have all heard. You don’t have to be a church goer to
hear it. Parents love that story to show their children that it does not matter what they do, they can always come home where they will always be loved and cherished. Home is where love reigns supreme and judgement stays outside.
This is the story of Jose Reyes.
I will be the first to tell you I was horrified by the events that led to the downfall of Reyes. Grabbing his wife by the throat and shoving her into a glass door is no laughing matter. No matter your gender, chances are you agree with me. At the same time, we are taught to forgive.
So here we are.
Some feel Reyes abandoned the Mets his last day in Flushing. He had one more at-bat and pulled himself out of the game. We all thought he would never return again. No way the Mets were going to bring him back for the money he wanted. So off he went.
He left his home. He left those who loved and appreciated him. No other fan base has ever given him the love the Flushing faithful poured onto him with each play executed.
With each at-bat, chants of “Jose, Jose, Jose, Jose” echoed through the caverns of Shea Stadium and Citi Field.
With each stolen base, fans roared their approval.
Every time his face appeared to teach them a Spanish lesson, it was fun. Sure there is Yoenis Cespedes, but he isn’t Reyes.
David Wright and Reyes were the brothers that were going to make this franchise mean something again.
After 201, it just was not the same. Reyes left and Wright had to try to bring back the magic of 2006 alone.
Now with Wright done for the year and allegations of domestic abuse under Reyes’ belt, the prodigal son comes home. He comes home humbled and hurting.
The same way he left Mets fans feeling abandoned after that last plate appearance, perhaps he feels abandoned now. No team would look at him. No team would touch him. They avoided him like the plague.
The story has changed.
Just as the prodigal son came home begging his father to take him back and willing to work as a servant to earn his father’s affection again, Reyes comes home willing to do anything he is asked just to be loved again.
Mets general manager Sandy Alderson saw just how sorry Reyes is. Even if the fans don’t. He made sure the wayward child understood the error of his ways. Alderson made it clear Reyes was allowed to return with the conditions that it will never happen again. The only time Reyes is to raise his hand is to give a teammate a high five, to catch or throw a ball to make a play.
Lessons have been learned. The father has forgiven his son. Reyes comes back and gets a fresh start. Not many get the opportunity Reyes does. He gets to start at the beginning. He goes to the minors in Brooklyn and work his way back.
The prodigal son hurts. He is humbled. He wants to work. He wants to earn it. Many have forgiven him his sins. Now where do you stand?