The 2011 free agency period is only in its first few days and we’ve already been bombarded with wild speculation about where Jose Reyes might end up. We hear the Brewers and Nationals are the front runners in bidding that hasn’t even started. We hear that the Mets are less optimistic about signing him. We hear Reyes won’t give the Mets a hometown discount. This is liable to go on for a couple of months. It’s enough to drive a Mets fan even crazier (because you’ve got to be crazy to be a Mets fan in the first place!). My advice for surviving this trying time without a bullet to the brain — ignore it all.
These reports mean nothing. In some cases they come from the player’s agent, trying to scare one team or get another team to up the bidding. Sometimes they come from a team, trying to scare a player. But most times they come from sportswriters who are desperate to write something when nothing is going on, so they cling to any bit of information they can wring from even the lowest of club “officials.”
In these days of Twitter and online publications, any speculation gets out into the public — no time to investigate if the information is actually true. That comes later, after everybody already knows about it. In the old days of daily newspapers, writers had time to really look into things before publishing them. Now they are so afraid of being scooped they quickly and recklessly tweet the story. If it turns out not to be true? Who cares, it was just a tweet!
Thus we are bound to hear wild and crazy rumors disguised as “reports” about where Reyes will sign. It is easy for me to tell you to ignore such reports, but you know you will be reading them, as will I. But I would just say take each story with a grain of salt and consider what the source might be. Just don’t take any of them too seriously until there is a news conference with Jose Reyes holding up a jersey with his name on it.