The Mets have officially signed infielder Jose Reyes to a minor-league deal, according to a team announcement. The move has been widely expected over the last week, though Reyes was not eligible to sign with a club until this afternoon.
Reyes’ deal includes a club option for next season, extending the Mets’ control over him through the 2017 season.
Reyes, 33, was designated for assignment and subsequently released by the Rockies after missing the entire season to this point after violating Major League Baseball’s domestic violence policy. The Royals and White Sox had preliminary interest as well, though the potential public backlash to signing the veteran scared off some teams.
The Mets, who had publicly ruled out a reunion with Reyes when he first became available, are apparently comfortable enough with the situation to use Reyes at the major-league level. New York plans to give Reyes some time at third base, in place of the injured David Wright, and has not ruled out the possibility of using him in the outfield as well.
Reyes will first go to Low-A Brooklyn, spending about a week in the minors before joining the Mets’ major-league club for the first time since 2011. He spent nine years with the Mets from 2003 to 2011, being named an All-Star on four occasions while hitting .292/.341/.441 with 81 home runs in 1,050 games.
New York will pay Reyes the pro-rated portion of the major-league minimum, which amounts to less than $300,000 for the rest of the year. The Rockies, who had Reyes for only 47 games at the end of last season, will pay about $39 million through next season on the remainder of Reyes’ contract.
Reyes has not been the same player since leaving the Mets in free agency, spending time with the Marlins and Blue Jays before being traded to Colorado last July. He is a career .290/.339/.431 hitter with 118 home runs and 621 RBI in 13 major-league seasons.