Yoenis Cespedes was exiled from three teams before he came to the Mets in 2015 to save their season. As DH, he can atone for his sins since then – maybe.
It could be that Yoenis Cespedes has no goal in life other to make a big splash with intentions only of drawing attention to himself, wherever the course of his baseball career takes him.
In 2018, Yoenis Cespedes rolled into Spring Training each day, driving a tricked-out trike. Reluctant teammates and, of course, the New York media were drawn to parking to witness the show that included:
- A custom and tricked-out Jeep Wrangler
- A Polaris Slingshot. …
- A Lamborghini Aventador. …
- A Alfa Romeo 8C Competizione. …
And that was about the last we saw of Yoenis Cespedes for the 2018 season. Injured and requiring what turned out to be double surgery on both heels limited Cespedes to 38 games and only 81 the year before.
In between, we were treated to a self-written fairy-tale version of a tale he spun involving a boar chasing him and a hole he fell into on his ranch in Florida, causing Yoenis Cespedes to sit out the entire 2019 season.
Before that, reports widely circulated that Yoenis Cespedes was a chain-smoker who took batting practice only periodically, which exasperated then-manager Terry Collins.
Ultimately, Collins gave up trying to discipline Cespedes; he figured the best—and only—way to maximize Cespedes’ considerable athletic skills was to simply leave him alone. No one in Mets’ front office intervened to rein in their diva.
The ultimate insult comes with the $80+ million Yoenis Cespedes has in his bank account “earned” over the past four years. Just deserts finally came this year with an incentive loaded agreement with a base pay of $6 million. Given the short season, it’s unlikely Cespedes will reach any of the laid-out plateaus.
Yoenis Cespedes: The Receiver Of A Gift Horse Courtesy Of COVID-19
Wary of losing fans who shifted away to other forms of entertainment during the aborted 2020 season, MLB adopted several innovations designed to create excitement once the season resumed.
We’ll see expanded playoffs with as many as sixteen teams qualifying (as opposed to ten), a runner on second base to start every half-inning of overtime games, miced up player, as well as others.
But the most significant and somewhat controversial adjustment is the addition of a Universal DH that changes everything in the National League.
For Yoenis Cespedes, this means baseball has tossed him a lifeline in which his only obligation to the Mets and his teammates is to take four good at-bats a game, without having to “labor” in left field.
The new format in the NL opens up jobs and the possibility of extended careers for players like:
- Los Angeles Dodgers – Joc Pederson/Chris Taylor/Kiké Hernández.
- Washington Nationals – Howie Kendrick.
- Milwaukee Brewers – Ryan Braun. …
- Chicago Cubs – Kyle Schwarber.
- Cincinnati Reds – Nicholas Castellanos/Jesse Winker.
For the Mets, a distinct problem not only has been solved for them, but if Cespedes can carry his weight as the DH, their lineup undergoes a substantial boost with some much-needed run production opportunities.
Add Yoenis Cespedes to Michael Conforto, Pete Alonso, Jeff McNeil, Amed Rosario, and a budding Brandon Nimmo – and pitchers suddenly have little or no respite.
Will, The Real Yoenis Cespedes Please, Stand Up
We can always count on Yoenis Cespedes to self-promote himself. Earlier this year, he did not disappoint with the release of this hyped-up – “See, I can still hit” video:
If you are a fan of the Mets, you want with every breath you take for Cespedes to light it up this year, his final season with the Mets.
You remember the magic of what he did in those few precious weeks in September 2015, when the Mets outdid themselves, eventually earning a berth in the World Series, where they ultimately succumbed to the Kansas City Royals.
Standing in the way, though, is Yoenis Cespedes’s battle with himself, and how much pride and desire to excel remains in his being.
Because provided the DH sticks in the National League, as many expect it will, Yoenis Cespedes at age 34 can have a job and a new contract with the Mets or another team – but only if he shows up in 2020.