The stage is set for a fascinating final contract year for Yoenis Cespedes and the Mets. The veteran slugger says he’s a full go for the regular season and anticipates opening the year as the team’s designated hitter, as Tim Healey of Newsday was among those to cover on Twitter.
Cespedes is working back from some serious leg injuries that cost him not only significant action, but also significant guaranteed money. His amended contract calls for his earnings to depend in large part upon how many plate appearances he manages this year, so it’s good news for all parties that he’s ready to roll from the jump. (The targets will be pro-rated to reflect the shortened season.)
The real financial prize for Cespedes lies in another trip onto the open market at season’s end. He’s already 34 years of age, so there’ll be some natural limits to his potential earning power, but he could hold a top position on the market with a full-throated return to form.
The Mets will gladly pay up if Cespedes is able to play at his typical levels. He has done nothing but hit in New York — when he has been in the lineup. Cespedes carries a .282/.346/.543 batting line during his time in Queens but has appeared in only 119 contests since the start of the 2017 season.