"I took him out for that reason," Mets manager Willie Randolph said. "If you can't hustle, then you sit. That (plate appearance) was pretty self-explanatory. It's unacceptable. You go out there every day and you play hard or you sit your butt. The key is to play hard all the time."It's worth noting that Reyes had a smile on his face for most of the post game interview at his locker, despite looking extremely upset on the bench after the benching. So either the message was sent, or Reyes is a great actor.
Reyes took responsibility for the mistake. "I thought the ball was going to be foul, but you still have to run," he said. "It's my fault there, but that thing can happen to anybody."
This may turn out to be an issue down the road, or it may turn out to be no big deal. Randolph benching Reyes, if only for an inning in a 4-0 deficit, goes a long way towards sending a message, and making it no big deal down the road. It's one thing to bench the 25th man for not hustling. But when you bench the highest energy guy on the team, the starting shortstop for the National League all-stars, people notice. And if Reyes' teammates notice, perhaps it will prove just the trick to snap the Mets out of their latest streak which has seen them lose five of their last six games.