It is being reported by FOX Sports baseball insider Ken Rosenthal that the New York Mets have come to terms on a deal with free agent outfielder Yoenis Cespedes. The deal is reportedly going to be the biggest free agent deal in Mets history.The reported specifics detail Cespedes receiving a four-year $110 million deal. The deal will pan out to an average of $27.5 million dollars a year for the 31-year old slugger. While the amount isn’t as nearly as surprising, the length of the contract certainly is. It was being widely reported that Cespedes was looking for a five-year contract on the open market and teams such as the San Francisco Giants and Washington Nationals were lurking in the background. Cespedes will receive full no-trade protection and is only behind Tigers first baseman Miguel Cabrera in terms of annual average salary for a position player in MLB history. Cespedes will however hold the top annual average salary ever for any outfielder with this deal.
It is a big get for Sandy Alderson and company as they look to return to the World Series after last year’s Wild Card round elimination. The Mets have not had an impactful bat in their lineup since Carlos Beltran, and Cespedes has proven to be that and more over his season and a half with the team. He has fully embraced New York and New York has fully embraced him. In 189 games played for the Mets since coming over during the 2015 MLB Trade Deadline Cespedes has hit .282 with 48 home runs and 130 RBI’s.
Now that this deal has been completed, the Mets can focus their attention in other directions in regards to improving the roster. Jay Bruce is highly likely to be traded after this signing and it will be interesting to see what the Mets will want in return. There had already been speculation earlier this month that both the Blue Jays and Mets were talking about a deal involving the 29-year old outfielder. The hot stove is getting hotter with the Winter Meetings around the corner, and the Mets for the first time in quite some time dug deep in their pockets to get their guy.
The Mets are currently playing to keep their season alive over the next two days in St. Louis, and the Mets have two players on the roster who are doing everything they possibly can to keep their dreams of October alive.
Jose Reyes has been everything the Mets wanted when they signed him back on June 25th. While he got off to a slow start, he has really turned it on as of late and has kept the Mets offensively afloat with his ability to get on base and score runs. Over his last five games, which have been critical games for the Mets, Reyes has hit .429 with a .478 on-base percentage and has scored five runs. Reyes actually accounted for three of the Mets seven runs in last night’s game and he reached base four times. Having a table setter at the top of the lineup with speed is something the Mets have been looking for all season and they finally have it at their disposal. The 33-year old’s glove has also been steady at third base only accounting for one error in the 157 innings he’s played there thus far. We all heard the stories about how Reyes rubbed his teammates in Colorado the wrong way and it had to have been tough on him getting traded from a playoff team to a team in the bottom-half of the league in the middle of the season. His motivation may not have fully been there in Colorado, but we are seeing a fully energized and motivated Reyes who wants to help the Mets reach the postseason. Reyes is also playing himself on to the team for next season and I’m glad we have one of our own homegrown players helping lead the charge to October.
The way Yoenis Cespedes goes is the way the Mets go and that is something we have seen over the past season and a half with the Mets. Cespedes is the unquestioned team leader and his impact has been felt since returning to the lineup on Friday night. Over his last four games since returning, the 30-year old slugger has hit .412 with three home runs and five RBIs. Oh yeah the Mets are also 3-1 in those four games and have a chance to be right in the middle of the Wild Card race again with victories in the next two games against the Cardinals. There is no question that the Mets need Cespedes down the stretch but also beyond that. We haven’t seen a player be able to change the dynamic of the Mets lineup since the Mets had Carlos Beltran. I can’t imagine the team without Cespedes going into the future as he has led this team to the World Series once, and he is going to try and use his heroics again to make a late season push for the Mets. In 155 games played since being acquired by the Mets, Cespedes has posted a .292 average with 42 home runs and 108 RBIs. Those are numbers that could be comparable to a full season and he has more than proven the New York spotlight is not too big for him. We will all be riding Cespedes’ coattails down the stretch with the hopes of playing in October. We also will be hoping that the Mets are able to make sure Cespedes is a part of the future of the team come this winter as well.
The Mets have activated both outfielder Yoenis Cespedes and shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera off the 15-day DL prior to tonight’s contest. In a corresponding move infielder T.J. Rivera and utility player Ty Kelly have been optioned back to Triple-A Las Vegas.
Cespedes who has been battling a quad injury since July, was finally placed on the disabled list on August 3rd after struggling at the plate as well as being in and out of the Mets lineup with soreness in his quad. Cespedes will provide a huge boost to the Mets lineup as he is their best offensive player. It will also be exciting to see both Jay Bruce and Yoenis Cespedes patrol the outfield for the first time since Bruce’s acquisition at the Trade Deadline. Cespedes was hitting .289 with 22 home runs and 59 RBIs in 94 games prior to going on the disabled list.
Cabrera is also making his return tonight after suffering a strained left patellar tendon back on July 31st rounding third base. The injury at the time looked like it had the potential to be season ending so it is nice to see Cabrera back with the big club. Cabrera will regain his shortstop duties with Jose Reyes moving back over to third base. The switch-hitting shortstop was hitting .255 with 13 home runs and 33 RBIs in 100 games prior to hitting the DL.
Both Rivera and Kelly will head back to Las Vegas as two of the top hitters in the Pacific Coast League with well over .300 averages. In fact Rivera leads the PCL with a .349 average, with Kelly not too far behind with a .342 average. Both players served servicible roles for the Mets and we can expect them both back in September if not sooner if another injury decides to peak it’s head.
The Mets have placed outfielder Yoenis Cespedes on the 15-day DL with a right quadriceps injury. Cespedes appeared to re-aggravate the injury on the second swing of his last at-bat last night, and all talks of him playing as a designated hitter for the rest of the week went out the window. Cespedes has been dealing with this injury since the beginning of July, and there is no sense in playing him sporadically when rest is the best way to get him 100% healthy.
Recent pictures of Cespedes golfing with former Major Leaguer Kevin Millar surfaced prior to last night’s game and criticism has run rampant. I don’t believe golfing had any affect on the 30-year old outfielder’s quadricep flaring up last night, but it isn’t a good look in the eyes of the New York media and the fans. Since the quad injury had arisen he has sit for seven games and played sporadically for 14 games, while only hitting .227. It’s clear Cespedes needs rest to get back to the middle of the order monster we’ve known him to be. However staying off the golf course for the next 15 days would be the best public relations move for La Potencia.
Brandon Nimmo who is earning his share of frequent flyer miles between the number of trips he’s made between Las Vegas and New York was recalled in a corresponding move. Nimmo had reportedly only been in Las Vegas for an hour before being asked to fly back and his equipment won’t make it back in time for tonight’s game. The Mets have a left-handed heavy outfield now with the addition of the 23-year old outfielder, as all five outfielders on the active roster are left-handed.
Jay Bruce will now be looked upon to lead the offense while Cespedes is out. Bruce hasn’t gotten off to the start he would have liked to as he is 0-8 early in his Mets career, and he struck out looking in a critical bases loaded situation last night.