According to Mike Puma, Jerry Manuel is planning on batting Reyes third in the lineup.
“Reyes, in my opinion, has evolved,” Manuel said. “I could really stretch our lineup out if [Reyes] is able to handle that spot.”
Manuel went on to say he envisions Pagan leading off, followed by CastilloÂ or Murphy, then Reyes, Bay, Wright, and Francouer. Additionally, Manuel hopes “the experiment is successful, allowing him to perhaps keep Reyes in the third spot when Beltran returns.”
According to Brian Costa, “Manuel said if Reyes is doing well in the No. 3 spot when Beltran returns, he would keep Reyes there and bat Beltran second, fourth or fifth.”
Adam Rubin has Reyes’ reaction:
A few of us, including trs, have been hoping Manuel would make this move, especially since Reyes won’t be asked to run as much batting third. With Beltran out, it makes even more sense. What’s really interesting is that Manuel suggested Reyes could keep the spot when Beltran returns.
Asked if it’s different now compared with last spring training, when he seemed upset with the prospect, Reyes said: “I didn’t say I didn’t want to do it. I didn’t say that. It’s no different. Whatever spot he puts me in the lineup, I’m going to be able to do that. Whatever is best for the team, I’m going to do it. So let’s see what happens.
Updated 2:55 p.m.
Potential 2010 Lineups: