Yoenis Cespedes really knows how to make an entrance. Fresh off a 15 day stint on the disabled list, Cespedes returned with a bang this weekend, blasting three mammoth home runs while driving in five and helping the Mets end their west coast swing on a high note with two straight wins.
I think it’s safe to say that Cespedes’ quad is fully healed and one can’t help but wonder where the Mets would be if they had simply DL’ed him back in early July instead of letting him limp through some woefully inadequate production while playing at less than 100 percent strength for a month.
But the good news is that there’s still plenty of time for the Mets to grab that second wild card, and with Cespedes now firing on all cylinders and giving the lineup that potent punch that it had been lacking, I really love our chances.
Cespedes is a true difference maker in every sense and his numbers as a Met are kind of jaw-dropping. In 154 games with the Amazins, he’s batted .290 with 33 doubles, nine triples, 42 home runs and a .937 OPS in 575 at-bats.
If he continues to produce these kinds of numbers over the next 38 games, and the Mets continue to get solid performances from Syndergaard, deGrom and Matz, a second consecutive trip to the postseason is well within the team’s grasp.
– – – Joe D.
Original Report – Aug 21
In just his second game back from the disabled list, Yoenis Cespedes ignited the Mets’ offense with an incredible afternoon at the plate. He belted a RBI double to left field in the first inning, and then later smashed two solo homeruns off Matt Moore and Jake Peavy.
Cespedes’ triumphant return to the lineup has given Terry Collins renewed hope that the Mets will make it back to the playoffs.
“Let me tell you something, if this guy gets going, we’ll make it [to the postseason],” Collins said. (Kevin Kernan, NY Post)
The best news about Cespedes’ performance is that it shows his injury, which he suffered just before the All-Star break, is finally behind him.
“Today was a good day for any ballplayer,” Cespedes said. “You could say today is an excellent day. I felt very good at the plate. But you can’t say the timing is 100% back, though we’ll see what goes on next.”
“When I am up at the plate, I am able to swing better now that I have that strength back in my leg,” Cespedes added. (Mike Puma, NY Post)
With the Mets 4.5 games out of the wild card and their record standing at 61-62, they desperately need Cespedes back at full strength. They have to to go 27-14 the rest of the way just to win 88 games, but Cespedes has helped the Mets overcome seemingly insurmountable odds before.
Last season, with the Mets’ also in dire need of offense, it was Cespedes who rejuvenated the team. He batted .287/.337/,604 during the second half with 17 homeruns and 44 RBI in 57 games.
While some regarded it as a fluke, Cespedes has shown that his heroics last season wasn’t the product of a small sample size. His performance this year has been just as good with a .293 average, .930 OPS and 24 homeruns in 96 games.
He’s without a doubt the best hitter on the team as he leads the Mets in almost every major category, including average, OBP, slugging percentage, homeruns and RBI. .
“Cespedes, that presence is just sort of fear and concern in the other team,” Bartolo Colon said.
Obviously, it’s asking a lot for one player to turn an entire season around, so the Mets need the rest of the team to step up as well.
But the Mets won’t be able to do it without the star power of Cespedes. If he can go on a tear during the final weeks of the season, he could help lead the Mets back to the playoffs.
“Cespedes is so dangerous in the middle of our lineup and he makes such a big difference,” Collins said. “It’s nothing against anybody else, but he’s tough to replace.”