The Mets are still very much in the mix. While they do not know where they stand exactly with Yoenis Cespedes, the team feels that the Cuban slugger has narrowed down the teams he is talking to and the Mets are still strongly in the mix a team source said.
“I know he’s talked to some people. He’s never said that he is coming back, but he’s said he loved it here, he’s happy here and we’ll see” the source said. “He sounded like they were talking to a few teams, not too many.”
A report Thursday said Cespedes had narrowed his choices down to four teams. A representative for the outfielder said they would not comment on negotiations at all.
Wednesday night, Sandy Alderson said in a radio interview that the Mets have made it clear they want to re-sign Cespedes and confirmed that he has been in touch. The Mets GM said that Cespedes “texted the organization,” to say he was interested in returning.
Yoenis Cespedes has been in contact with the Mets to say that he’s interested in returning, but a source says the outfielder is also talking to other teams.
(Adam Hunger/Getty Images)
But if he doesn’t return, Alderson appears willing to flip the bat.
“I would look at it this way … there are sort of three categories of righthanded power,” Alderson said on WOR. “One is Cespedes. Then there are players in a second category who are the type of player who might be comparable to Yoenis in some way. … There are some free agents in that category, (Jose) Bautista being one, there are some players from other clubs who might be available to us as well — significant hitters.”
Bautista, 36, developed into an All-Star and MVP candidate late in his career with Toronto but was slowed in 2016, batting just .234 with 22 homers and 69 RBI in 116 games.
Sandy Alderson’s backup plan if Yoenis Cespedes signs elsewhere is not very appealing.
Alderson didn’t name any other free agents — Edwin Encarnacion and Ian Desmond also offer righty power.
However, it was clear that Alderson and the Mets front office sound more excited about more creative options for balancing the lefty-heavy lineup and getting more production. It’s the approach the Mets were taking last winter before they were able to bring back Cespedes in a deal that surprised them.
“A third category would (be a) complementary player who fits in with what we have,” Alderson explained. “Currently have (Michael) Conforto, (Jay) Bruce and (Curtis) Granderson as lefties. And we have Juan Lagares as a right hander. So say you bring in a complementary piece. Just as an example, a Steve Pearce.
Jose Bautista was exposed int he postseason, striking out 17 times in 18 plate appearances.
(Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)
“So we are weighing if that would be the best approach for us,” Alderson said. “Most pitching in the National League is right handed, so to the extent you are a little out of balance, you are far better being left handed than right handed, is how I look at it.”
As for the rumblings about Cespedes’ diva-like behavior at times, the Mets are not too concerned about the cars and golf that had some fans upset last season.
“It’s important to keep it in perspective and for most part he does,” Alderson said. “It’s not glaring. It’s important from time to time, to say they are baseball players and that is the source of their celebrity and compensation.
“I wouldn’t feel any more concern to Cespedes than anybody else.”
Source: NY Daily News Headlines Sports News