Yoenis Cespedes’ boycott of the media lasted six days.
Cespedes spoke for the first time this spring on Sunday, admitting that he made a “mistake” that led to his season-ending ankle fracture in May 2019. He added that he’s targeting Opening Day for his return to action.
“I committed and error and I paid for it,” Yoenis Céspedes says. He doesn’t want to address the past though pic.twitter.com/4wTZBLQs2U
— Justin Toscano (@JustinCToscano) February 23, 2020
Yoenis Céspedes said if he keeps progressing the way he is, he’ll be ready for opening Day
— Justin Toscano (@JustinCToscano) February 23, 2020
In other words, we’re not going to get much clarity regarding Cespedes’ reported wild boar incident. That incident cost him a lot of money as the Mets forced him to restructure his contract, and a lot of people were understandably upset with him over the whole ordeal.
What is clear is that Cespedes’ threatened media boycott is definitely over now. Perhaps someone with the Mets had a word with him about it.
- Yoenis Cespedes
Yoenis Cespedes is back with the New York Mets and is expected to play a role this year, but it appears that he’s taking a vow of silence when it comes to the media.
The outfielder was asked for comment during spring workouts Monday, and he blew off the press, stating that he would not talk “at all” this season.
Yoenis Cespedes was asked if he had a few minutes to speak with the media: “Not today, not tomorrow, not at all this year,” he said.
— Mike Puma (@NYPost_Mets) February 17, 2020
There was certainly no indication why Cespedes felt this way, but the safe guess is he didn’t appreciate the New York media’s reporting about the bizarre ranch accident that cost him all of last season. Such an odd story lends itself well to headlines, so plenty has been written about it. Cespedes has been painted as irresponsible in some quarters for the nature of that injury.
Staying on the field will be key for Cespedes this season. If he can do that and hit a bit, he may be able to silence the critics.
- Yoenis Cespedes
The New York Mets are getting set for the start of spring training next month, and Yoenis Cespedes is figuring into their plans for the first time in a while. But that may not last long.
SNY’s Andy Martino said on Tuesday that the Mets would be happy to trade both Cespedes and Jed Lowrie before spring training begins. That’s not so easy to do though.
Mets would be more than happy to trade Cespedes and Lowrie before spring training, but this has proven difficult for obvious reasons.
— Andy Martino (@martinonyc) January 21, 2020
Cespedes missed all of 2019, hasn’t played a full season since 2015, and is coming off multiple foot/ankle injuries and surgeries. Though he agreed to a salary adjustment for 2020, taking him on would still present a risk for teams (he’ll earn $11 million just by making the Opening Day roster).
Lowrie turns 36 in April and only played in nine games last season due to injuries. He is set to earn $10 million in 2020 thanks to the contract he signed last year. The Mets’ infield is already crowded, so Lowrie is more or less superfluous. The Oakland A’s may have interest in acquiring him yet again.
Yoenis Cespedes missed all of last season with an ankle injury that came as he was recovering from surgery to both of his heels. Now we know how he suffered the injury.
At the time he initially suffered the injury, the public was informed that Cespedes was hurt at his ranch. The New York Post published a story on Friday that provides more background to the matter.
The Post’s Joel Sherman, Ken Davidoff and Mike Puma say Cespedes was hurt stepping into a hole at his ranch during an interaction with a wild boar. A wild boar. Yes, a wild boar.
From the Post:
According to multiple people who were informed of the incident, Cespedes has traps on his ranch for a variety of reasons, including to keep boars away from people. But one boar was removed from a trap — perhaps by Cespedes — and either charged toward Cespedes or startled him, causing Cespedes to step into a hole.
And just like that, Cespedes fractured his ankle.
Cespedes’ status for 2019 was already in question due to the heel surgeries that ended his 2018 season, so the ankle injury on top of it did not help matters.
The Commissioners Office and Players Association got involved in the situation because the Mets wanted to withhold salary from Cespedes, feeling he may have violated terms of his contract with the way he got hurt. The two sides ended up agreeing to a salary adjustment for 2020. Cespedes has only played in 119 games since signing a 4-year, $110 million contract extension with the Mets prior to the 2017 season. 2020 will be his final year under contract with the team.
Yoenis Cespedes reached an agreement with the New York Mets this week to significantly lower his salary for 2020, and that could result in the team being able to trade the veteran outfielder.
Cespedes has reportedly taken a pay cut of roughly $20 million to lower his 2020 salary to around $10 million from $29.5 million. According to Anthony DiComo of MLB.com, the contract restructure has led to teams reaching out to the Mets about possible trades involving Cespedes.
One interesting effect of Yoenis Céspedes' contract restructuring: the Mets have had teams reach out the past week regarding his availability in trades, according to a source. Nothing close or imminent or even all that likely, but some initial conversations have taken place.
— Anthony DiComo (@AnthonyDiComo) December 19, 2019
Cespedes signed a four-year, $110 million extension with the Mets prior to the 2017 season, and he has played in only 119 games over the past two seasons because of numerous injuries. He hit .262 with nine home runs and 29 RBI in 38 games in 2018. The 34-year-old is a quality power hitter when healthy, so teams are likely kicking the tires to see if they can get him at a reasonable price.
MLB players taking pay cuts is almost unheard of due to contracts being fully guaranteed, but Cespedes agreed to take less money because the Mets are said to have a credible grievance over the way he injured his ankles last May.
Yoenis Cespedes won’t be making as much as he originally expected to in 2020 after he renegotiated his salary with the New York Mets.
According to various reports, Cespedes and the Mets have renegotiated his deal to reduce his salary from the $29.5 million he was originally owed.
Yoenis Cespedes and the New York Mets have agreed on an amended contract, a source tells ESPN. While he remains with the team, the settlement significantly lower his salary from the planned $29.5 million.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) December 13, 2019
According to Andy Martino of SNY, the renegotiation stems from the Mets having a credible grievance after Cespedes fractured his ankles in an accident on his ranch last May.
It is related to his ranch injury. He wouldn’t be taking less unless there was a case against him related to that. https://t.co/c4ZQB9y4yA
— Andy Martino (@martinonyc) December 13, 2019
2020 is the final year of the four-year contract Cespedes signed with the Mets. While he’s put up his usual power numbers, he’s played in only 119 games over the previous two seasons due to various injuries. It’s unclear if he’ll be ready for Opening Day as he continues to recover from the ankle injuries.
Believe it or not, the Home Run Derby wasn’t always a big deal. In 1990, for instance, a group of eight of the era’s finest sluggers hit just five total home runs at Wrigley Field in a non-televised competition. That all changed in the 1990s, thanks to ESPN and a new era of stars that unwittingly made the Derby one of the biggest events on the baseball calendar.
There have been dozens of contestants over the years, but a handful rise to the top as the most accomplished and memorable of the derby era. Here are the ten best we’ve seen since the event was first staged in 1985.
10. Bobby Abreu
In 2005, Comerica Park in Detroit had a steadfast reputation as a true pitcher’s park, and there were concerns that the Home Run Derby there would be a non-event. Abreu, then with the Philadelphia Phillies, ensured that those fears would prove unfounded. Abreu hit 24 home runs in the first round which, even after the recent format changes and shift from outs to timed rounds, still ties him for the second-best round of all time. He went on to win the competition, largely on the strength of that round.
9. Yoenis Cespedes
A two-time winner, Cespedes hit big, towering shots with his intense swings. He had a 17-homer round in 2013, but ultimately won his back-to-back titles with a methodical approach as opposed to absolutely monstrous rounds that wowed fans and opponents alike. There’s something to be said for that more balanced approach, and while there have been three multiple-time winners, Cespedes is one of only two contestants to win in consecutive years.