Reyes to stay on DL until he's in shape

New York Mets shortstop Jose Reyes will start the season on the disabled list to get in better shape.

Reyes said the team told him Thursday he’ll be on the DL because he’s had so little practice in spring training. He returned to camp in Port St. Lucie, Fla., last week after a three-week absence because of thyroid issues.

“I want to be there on opening day, there’s no doubt, but we have to make the right decision,” Reyes said. “If I miss a couple games, it won’t be a big deal because I have to get ready for the season.”

Reyes isn’t sure how long he’ll be on the DL. But he’s had just 10 at-bats in minor league games, with base-running limitations. He has yet to play more than three innings in the field in a game.

The two-time All-Star tripled in his first at-bat of an intrasquad scrimmage March 1. After blood work, he was sent to New York for more testing that revealed he had a hyperactive thyroid.

Reyes hasn’t played nine innings since last May when he was sidelined for the season after 36 games because of a hamstring injury.

“It’s crazy,” Reyes said. “So many things happened to me in spring training. But I have to stay positive in my mind, and hopefully I can get in the games as soon as I can.”

Granderson goes to center

New York Yankees manager Joe Girardi made Curtis Granderson his starting center fielder.

The Yankees explored the possibility of shifting Granderson, a 2009 American League All-Star, to left so the speedy Brett Gardner could play center. Gardner will play in left.

Girardi said there was “no wrong decision.”

Granderson was obtained from Detroit in a three-team, seven-player trade in December.

MLB’s Levin to retire

Rich Levin will retire at the end of the year after a quarter century as Major League Baseball’s chief spokesman.

Levin is baseball’s senior vice president for public relations. He joined the commissioner’s office in 1985 under commissioner Peter Ueberroth after working as his assistant press secretary at the Los Angeles Olympic Organizing Committee.

Levin was the main spokesman for commissioners A. Bartlett Giamatti, Fay Vincent and Bud Selig.

Marcus Giles gets probation

Former big league second baseman Marcus Giles has pleaded guilty in El Cajon, Calif., to misdemeanor battery for assaulting his wife last fall.

Giles was placed on three years probation by Judge Patricia Cookson and ordered to undergo a year of counseling.

The judge also issued a limited protective order against Giles, meaning he can have contact with his wife but cannot annoy or abuse her.

Short hops

Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Joe Blanton has been placed on the 15-day disabled list because of a mild left oblique strain. Blanton, projected as the No. 3 starter behind Roy Halladay and Cole Hamels, could be out three to six weeks. … The Los Angeles Dodgers have chosen Blake DeWitt as their opening day second baseman and knuckleball pitcher Charlie Haeger as their No. 5 starter. … Boston Red Sox pitcher Junichi Tazawa will have elbow ligament replacement surgery on his right elbow next week, an operation that is likely to sideline him for about a year. … The Baltimore Orioles granted Chad Moeller’s request for an outright release, allowing the veteran catcher to become a free agent. … David Huff was named the Cleveland Indians’ No. 5 starter.