Reyes banned through May under MLB domestic violence policy
DENVER (AP) Jose Reyes now knows when he can return. His role and perhaps his future with the Colorado Rockies remain as murky as ever, especially given the emergence of rookie shortstop Trevor Story.
Reyes was suspended through May 31 on Friday, the second player penalized under Major League Baseball's new domestic violence policy. Reyes agreed to the punishment and won't appeal, the commissioner's office said. The penalty stemmed from an alleged altercation with his wife at a Hawaii resort last October.
In Reyes' absence, Story has taken his job and become one of baseball's big surprises this season. Story ranks among the big league leaders with 11 homers and 27 RBIs and is batting .266.
"I don't worry myself too much in the future or what's going to happen when Jose comes back," Story said. "Take it day by day and things will work out."
The Rockies are still formulating a plan with Reyes whether he will head to Arizona for extended spring training or maybe on a minor league rehab assignment.
"We are in phase 2 of this, which is, 'OK, what next?' and, 'What now?'" Rockies general manager Jeff Bridich said. "There is no sense or need to put the cart before the horse before we fully understood what the penalty was going to be under the policy.
"Now we're going to have to start truly re-engaging with Jose and his agent, making sure we're on the same page."
The four-time All-Star shortstop will lose 52 days of pay under the agreement, a person familiar with the deal told The Associated Press, which amounts to $6,251,366 of Reyes' $22 million salary. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because that aspect of the penalty wasn't made public.
"I want to apologize for everything that has happened," Reyes said in a statement released by the players' union. "I am sorry to the Rockies organization, my teammates, all the fans and most of all my family."
The 32-year-old has not been with the Rockies all year. But outfielder Carlos Gonzalez doesn't think the chemistry in the clubhouse will be drastically altered once he does return.
"He's a guy who will bring a smile to the field. He enjoys the game," Gonzalez said. "It's never bad when you have talent on your team."
Bridich refused to speculate about whether he will look to trade Reyes.
"Everybody has kind of been in limbo, Jose included, the Rockies included," Bridich said. "We'll see what goes on. But any of those sorts of conversations not at liberty to comment on right now."
Earlier this week, New York Yankees closer Aroldis Chapman joined the team after serving a 29-game penalty.
Discipline under the MLB policy, which was agreed to last summer after a number of high-profile incidents involving NFL players, isn't predicated on a conviction. Reyes had been scheduled to go to trial April 4 after pleading not guilty to abusing a family or household member. Hawaii prosecutors dropped charges before the trial date and said his wife was not cooperating.
Reyes is a career .290 hitter with 479 stolen bases in 13 seasons, and his contract with the Rockies runs through the 2017 season and includes a club option for 2018. He won the 2011 NL batting title while with the New York Mets who were set to play at Colorado on Friday night.
"It's been a long time since I've been around Jose Reyes, but there was nobody more shocked knowing him and being around him than I was," Mets manager Terry Collins said. "Let's get it behind us and let's move on. I think he's a great player and love him as a human being. Hope it's all settled."
Reyes' penalty without pay was retroactive to Feb. 23, when he was put on leave ahead of the Rockies' spring training report date for position players. Commissioner Rob Manfred said Reyes has agreed to contribute $100,000 to one or more charitable groups that focus on preventing and treating survivors of domestic violence.
"I am encouraged by Mr. Reyes' commitment to the treatment provisions of the policy in order to ensure that such an incident does not occur in the future," Manfred said in a statement.
Last Oct. 31, Reyes was arrested at the Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea. According to a recording of a 911 call released by police, a hotel security guard reported the woman had injuries to her leg and scratches on her neck.
Reyes was released after posting $1,000 bail and was ordered to stay away from his wife for three days. He pleaded not guilty to abusing a family or household member.
Chapman agreed in March to a 30-game suspension after an altercation with his girlfriend last October in Florida. A rainout cut the games he missed to 29.
AP Baseball Writer Ronald Blum in New York contributed to this report.