Scouts are buzzing over Yoenis Cespedes, writes Jon Heyman of CBS Sports, but not necessarily over his power. Some clocked Cespedes at 3.9 seconds from home plate to first base in beating out a grounder to Jimmy Rollins in Game 3 of the NLDS, Heyman writes, and that burst of elite speed just serves as a demonstration of the rare blend of power and quickness he brings to the table. One anonymous GM from a club not expected to pursue Cespedes told Heyman he expects the outfielder to land a contract in the vicinity of $150MM over a six-year term. The Mets have never spent at that level, but Heyman notes that despite having a stable outfield situation, the team very much wants to retain him.
A few more notes from the NL East as the Mets begin preparation for a decisive Game 5 in the NLDS after falling to Clayton Kershaw and the Dodgers 3-1 in Game 4…
- Bob Brookover of the Philadelphia Inquirer opines that Kim Ng is the best fit for the Phillies’ general manager vacancy. Brookover spoke to bench coach Larry Bowa, who knows Ng well from his time working for the Yankees and Dodgers while she was an assistant GM in those organizations. Bowa spoke highly about Ng’s baseball acumen, and Brookover notes that having worked in front offices and for the league’s central offices dating back to 1991, Ng would have a wide base of connections from which to draw when making scouting and baseball operations hires.
- MLB.com’s Joe Frisaro provides a breakdown of the Marlins’ managerial search, outlining five factors to keep an eye on as the process plays out. Frisaro backs up recent reports that owner Jeffrey Loria is particularly interested in Don Mattingly, but there’s no indication yet that he’ll be dismissed from the Dodgers, and if he’s not, the Dodgers would seek compensation to allow him to go to Miami. Frisaro also looks at the possible implications for the coaching staff and emphasizes that the Marlins will seek prior managing experience in any candidates.
- While the Nationals have a nice core in place, there’s at least somewhat of a split opinion on whether or not the team should continue trying to put together a winner this offseason or embark on somewhat of a rebuild, sources from the team’s board of directors and front office tell ESPN’s Jim Bowden (ESPN Insider subscription required). Bowden opines that a bat to complement Bryce Harper in the middle of the lineup, a proven starter (even with Joe Ross likely able to step into the rotation) and sorting out the Jonathan Papelbon/Drew Storen mess should top the Nats’ priority list this winter.