Did losing two of three from the Braves take the shine off of winning seven straight? It appears so, but not because they lost but by how they lost. Same old stuff. Sloppy baserunning and not hitting with runners in scoring position.
A lot of the running mistakes were by Jose Reyes, who, because of his speed, is blasted one way or another. Reyes can’t win. He either is blasted for being thrown out at third with the play ahead of him or for not trying for third as in yesterday’s game.
By his own admission, Reyes ran with his head down on the first play and promised he wouldn’t do it again. He didn’t have a chance to be thrown out yesterday because he glided into second after styling out of the batter’s box. Maybe Reyes could have made it, but for sure if he learned from his previous mistake and was running hard with his head up he would have seen the play in front of him and known if he had a chance.
The crime is in loafing out of the box because you never know. With Reyes’ speed, sometimes he can force a bad throw. That’s also part of the equation. Rightly or wrongly, Reyes is as fault because of the perception of not hustling.
On running to third on the ball hit to shortstop, well, that was just a dumb play.
The problem with Reyes is because of his talent and physical gifts there are lofty expectations. Some of these expectations are unfair, but Reyes can take the heat off by hustling at all times.
Speaking of hustling at all times, I’ve noticed what a few of you have commented on concerning David Wright. He’s been known to take a routine play off and not run hard, and eventually it will come back to bite him.