Addressing the media Sunday at Citi Field, Mets’ COO Jeff Wilpon addressed the status of outfielder Yoenis Cespedes for 2019.
When asked if the team will have to plan as if Cespedes will be out for the year, Wilpon essentially responded yes.
“You probably do have to plan that way, given the fact that it’s uncertain,” he said.
Cespedes is entering the third year of a four-year, $110 million deal that he signed prior to the 2017 season.
The outfielder was limited to 38 games this year, after being plagued by calcification in both heels. He underwent surgery on one of them during the season, and will have the second surgery this offseason.
Wilpon added that Cespedes responded well to the first surgery, and the hope is that he responds well to the second surgery as well. However, the surgery of that magnitude has a recovery process of eight to 10 months. So, if Cespedes does return, it’ll be for a late half push.
However, the Mets do have a lot of talent in their outfield, which will soften the blow of having Cespedes sidelined.
Center fielder Juan Lagares will also be returning next year for the final year of a five-year contract he signed prior to the 2015 season. They also have Jay Bruce for two more seasons, and hopefully come to their senses to let him play outfield and Peter Alonso or Dominic Smith play first base.