“I was shocked, because Jeffrey Loria, he always told me he’s never going to trade me,” Reyes said with his new team at Spring Training. “He always called my agent and said, ‘Tell Jose to get a good place here to live,’ and stuff like that.”
“That was kind of crazy,” Reyes continued. “I mean, how can you want me to spend some money in Miami, when I have my house in New York, and you’re going to trade me in two days?”
So, what are we to believe? That Jeffrey Loria is either the shadiest owner alive, or that maybe even he didn’t know about the possible deal at the time? It is clear now that the Marlins were working on something with the Blue Jays. You don’t fire up a deal that large in less than 48 hours anyway, but the question is, was Loria aware of the finer points of the deal and if so, was Reyes supposed to be a part of that deal? Or, scary thought, was Reyes a toss-in to get the deal made?
The Marlins clearly needed to throw in something to move John Buck’s contract out of south Florida. That could have easily been Josh Johnson, Mark Buerhle, or even Emilio Bonifacio on their own. Considering that there was very little on the radar screen when this deal went down, perhaps this was a quick and dirty deal and Loria may not have known, at the time, that Reyes was going to be a clincher in the deal.
It brings to light just how “hands-on” Loria really is. He is certainly depicted with a handle-bar mustache carrying innocent ball players and fans towards the train tracks. But could he really have been so cold-blooded as to tell Reyes to get a house in Miami only to deal him 2 days later? That doesn’t make any logical sense – why even make the suggestion? It wasn’t like Loria really had anything to prove at that point.
Then again, let’s flip this. Why did Reyes need reassurance he wasn’t going to be traded? Why did Loria have to contact his agent and say that Reyes wasn’t going to be traded? Why would Reyes sign a 6 year $106M contract and not buy a place in Miami, where he was expecting to finish out his contract? There are a lot more questions but as usual, the villain is painted here very clearly for all to see. Yet, there are more questions that need to be asked.