Tag Archive for Yoenis Cespedes

Chasen the Dream

Inevitably, three consecutive nights of staying up way too late only to see the Mets get destroyed by the Dodgers caught up to me and I was unable to respond to commands to update, but you might know by now that Chasen Bradford was recalled from Las Vegas in time for last night’s Mets game but the box score tells me he didn’t get in so that Fernando Salas and Jerry Blevins (who ought to be traded) could make their respective 35th and 36th appearances of the season.

If and when Bradford gets in, he’ll wear No. 46. He’s up to replace Tyler Pill, who resurfaced to replace Matt Harvey (who ought to be traded), or Zack Wheeler, both of whom went to the disabled list since the last time we updated. Also returning over the last week are Gavin Checchini and Brandon Nimmo, finally, the latter too late to sub for a struggling Curtis Granderson who is suddenly a hot Curtis Granderson (and ought to be traded); Matt Reynolds is back down; Yoenis Cespedes is back up; Neil Walker and Asdrubal Cabrera are on the disabled list but ought to be traded.

Hansel Robles is still down.

The Mets in addition to the injuries haven’t executed plays in the field or with men on base as hitters or pitchers, and you don’t need to tell me it looks pretty bleak. The National League in addition resembles one of those seasons in the NBA where I could tell you the playoff teams a third of the way in and so despite a strain of hope that the Mets and Terry will find a way to play better eventually it looks essentially pointless to try and so we’re likely to confront a bunch of big moves earlier than we may have expected.

Bradford by the way will be the first Mets 46 since Tyler Clippard who to my delight is getting lit up as a member of the Yankees, so you know, it’s not all bad.

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Bye Bye Bart

40As you know by now, Bartolo Colon has signed a 2017 contract with the Braves, where he’ll join fellow new arrival R.A. Dickey as a veteran dynamic duo we may well encounter when the Mets open the 2017 season against Atlanta in April.

Colon can’t be blamed for seeking a regular starting gig as he pursues a few personal milestones: He needs 10 wins to catch Juan Marichal for the all-time lead among Dominican pitchers, and 12 to surpass Dennis Martinez and become the winningest Latin American pitcher of all-time. I speak for all Mets fans wishing him the best of luck most nights, anyway.

I had no idea what to expect of Colon when he arrived as a 40-year-old ostensibly to hold Matt Harvey’s place in the rotation in 2014, and would not have predicted he’d depart three years later having set the all-time mark for wins (44) and strikeouts (415) among guys who wore No. 40 (Pat Zachry was the prior king and still leads this club in losses). Colon was a surprising guy all around, obviously a better athlete than he looked to be and a fun presence who really helped the Mets especially this last year. We’ll miss him!

20That’s the first significant departure of what’s looking to be an interesting offseason for the Mets. At the moment I cannot picture a scenario that doesn’t involve a significant trade or two. Briefly I’m sort of rooting against a return engagement for Neil Walker but can’t see how he’ll turn down that $17 million waiting for him, and if he takes it that’ll put a strain on the budget to re-engage Cespedes, so I suppose if the Mets want Walker they can do so with a compromise kind of multiyear deal, and just maybe, prepare him for a kind of caddy deal where his switch-hittingness becomes valuable for the bench while ushering in Gavin Cecchini who keeps on hitting.

While pursuit of a new deal for Cespedes could be hair raising it could be argued that the club already has the next-best available outfielder of a relatively weak class in Jay Bruce, and so I’m rooting for Sandy and the guys to make hay of this and surprise us.

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Snakebitten, Baby

48Unless you had the good sense to turn in early last early night you know nothing so sums up what the 2016 season has become than last night’s events in San Francisco, when a shocking Met hit with men on base — from Justin Ruggiano of all people, off Madison Friggin Bumgarner of all people, a grand slam to center field, of all things — was given all back and more within minutes — by Jacob deGrom of all people, on a two-run homer by Bumgarner of all people, in a 10-7 loss showing the Mets are practically determined to go wrong even when everything is arranged to go right.

52So don’t get too excited to learn tonight’s contest is expected to include the return of injured soldiers Yoenis Cespedes and Asbrubal Cabrera, and maybe even Neil Walker, because it also accompanies news that scheduled starting pitcher Steven Matz won’t be there, because, naturally, he’s being shut down with shoulder trouble.

When Fred Wilpon idiotically pitied his half-assededly assembled 2011 squad by remarking, “We’re snakebitten, baby,” he was off by five years.

I’m not officially giving up yet — I need something to pretend to root for when I fly my family to St. Louis next week just to see these guys — but it’s clear this edition of the Mets is going to require not just something miraculous, but something it hasn’t satisfactorily demonstrated any ability to do all year: Play well.

66Is there good news? Well, Josh Edgin is getting sent back to the minor leagues where he belongs after that shitshow in Phoenix the other night — again, if you turned in early, he not only walked the whole lineup but evidently was too fat to bother hustling in to retrieve his own wild pitch for a potential play at the plate. In his place is Josh Smoker, who will need a new uni assignment after the 49 he wore in a phantom appearance a few weeks back was taken back by Jon Niese, who like Edgin but hopefully not like Smoker, appears to be a lefty of limited value any longer.

How about we give Smokey 66? That’ll teach ’em. Not Joshin’.

UPDATE: He’s in 59. Naturally.

 

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Mets Feel the Bern

My inaugural trip to CitiField last night was a chilly but special one as I shared the evening with a special guest: Democratic Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders.

The Senator may be used to chilly conditions in Vermont but was cranky as the 7:10 game began.

My special guest at tonight's #Mets game: The one and only Bernie Sanders #feelthebern🔥

A video posted by Jon Springer (@jon.springer) on

The Reds taking an early 1-0 lead did little to improve Bernie’s mood, as did other distractions in Flushing.

#BernieSanders unhappy with events in New York #Mets #feelthebern🔥

A video posted by Jon Springer (@jon.springer) on

A nice play by Neil Walker brightened the mood a little, and caused Bernie to reflect on events of the past.

Bernie Sanders impressed with Neil Walker. #Mets

A video posted by Jon Springer (@jon.springer) on

52The Mets were still down in the polls when Yoenis Cespedes thrilled the candidate with a surprise pinch-hit 3-run home run.

Bernie Sanders reacts to #Cespedes home run.

A video posted by Jon Springer (@jon.springer) on

Donald Trump may build a wall, but it takes a champion of the middle class to hit a ball over it, the Senator later explained.

Cespedes: Strong, like a strong middle class. #feelthebern🔥

A video posted by Jon Springer (@jon.springer) on

After an RBI single by David Wright gave the Mets a lead, Addison Reed and Juerys Familia closed it out, as the Reds “felt the Bern” of the Mets’ 5-game winning streak.

Bernie Sanders with the #Mets happy tecap

A video posted by Jon Springer (@jon.springer) on

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Make Way for Team UnSexy

The Busiest Mets Offseason Without Any Sex Appeal Ever continued Tuesday when the Mets reportedly reached a 1-year contract agreement with free agent outfielder Alejandro De Aza.

30The lefty swinging De Aza, already a veteran of 5 other organizations, is expected to platoon with incumbent center fielder Juan Lagares and was chosen above other prospective jobbers like Will Venable. I’m not even going to guess what number De Aza is issued but will note that 19 is newly available upon Johnny Monell‘s release from the 40. He previously wore 7, 11, 30, 12, 31 and 45. Actually I’ll guess he takes 30 while Michael Conforto, as discussed below, takes 15.

Being one of those fans who tries hard to understand, if not rationalize, what the Mets tend to do and think we can say that De Aza is a cost-effective solution providing the same general “skill-set” of a Denard Span at a fraction of the cost or commitment and is less likely to miss half a season with a hip injury, and continues an overarching strategy to build on last year’s pennant winning club by minimizing the chances they are as debilitated by injury — rather, by overcoming those injuries — as they were a year ago. That said you have to wonder whether the best strategy might have been instead to trade Curtis Granderson and take your chances re-upping Yoenis Cespedes, entering the Jason Heyward fray or otherwise competing for the top talent.

Those ships however have sailed. Ready or not, these are our guys.

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Without 28

28I’m not going to lie and say Daniel Murphy was ever my favorite Met, but there’s no denying his Met-ness.

Now that it looks like his career with the Mets has come to an end Murphy departs having accounted for more than one-fourth of all games ever played by a guy wearing No. 28 — nearly 40% among position players. His lead over the next most active 28, John Milner, is exactly 162 games and almost 1,000 at-bats.

No Met 28 had any more hits, runs scored, doubles, triples, RBI and stolen bases than Murphy (Milner had more home runs); none were a bigger force in the postseason; no player made you crazier behind brilliant and brilliantly awful plays than Murphy.

52Now that Murphy has officially declined a “qualifying offer,” and it appears as though Yoenis Cespedes is going away too (thanks, and, uh, see ya around, Yo), remaking the interior of the Mets is a priority for the offseason. I don’t think it’s a radical of me to suggest the Mets look to do so with an eye on preventing the kind of up-the-middle sloppiness that doomed them to a deserving humiliation in the World Series (a friend described the Mets’ play against Kansas City as a “dog’s breakfast.”)

My opinion on the best way of going about things could change still but how about we move Wilmer Flores to second base, sign free agent Denard Span, and trade with the Red Sox for shortstop Xander Bogaerts? If and when Dilson Hererra forces his way up, Flores becomes the New Muprhy: Filling in at second, third and (if necessary) short.

Span — at least when healthy — is a nice player who can complement Lagares (he bats left, reaches base exceptionally well, steals bases).

2The Bogaerts part of my plan I admit is a bit of a reach, and might mean parting with Matt Harvey, but 22 year old shortstops like him don’t grow on trees. And it might be more realistic than the Matt-Harvey-for-Mookie-Betts talk out there, as much sense as that makes if only to acquire a Mookie.

Conflict in the making: Both Bogaerts and Span wear No. 2.

Ian Desmond, who could replace Murphy’s offense easily and improve the defense at short, is another possibility if you can’t part with the cost of acquiring a guy by trade.

46I warned you guys about Tyler Clippard, who wound up pretty much like all 46s do, but all the same bullpen upgrades should hardly ever be a priority. I suppose there’s an opportunity to add a few arms to the mix, but there almost always is.

10Congrats to Terry Collins on the new deal, I’m shocked he ever made it this far but he’s grown on me: Complaints about bullpen management come with every guy, but in general I haven’t felt like Terry gives up anything strategically to the other team’s manager, and in the case of the Nationals he beat them badly. As noted above I’d like to see his teams get a little better at the little things, and hope he’ll be held accountable when they don’t.

Your thoughts on the offseason?

 

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52 Pickup


Well. How great was that?

52This had to have been the wildest and most stressful Mets Trade Deadline ever (yes, and I was there in ’77!) and these guys are still hanging in there. The latest as you know is that fake-traded emotional erstwhile utility infielder Wilmer Flores just made the Nationals cry, and they’re about to face a Met lineup bolstered by newly acquired slugger Yoenis Cespedes. 

Cespedes is expected to take his customary No. 52 — his digits in all three of his first stops so far in a whirlwind tour of the Majors — while Carlos Torres, Friday’s deserving winning pitcher, is set to become the first ever wearer of the 72 jersey.

72Torres departs as the third and by far most distinguished member of the 52 Club: His predecessors are Tony Clark (following his switch from 00 in 2003) and forgettable reliever Ramon Ramirez, who was acquired in Sandy Alderson’s worst trade. Tonight, that seems like a long time ago.

 

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