Mets fans teed off over Cespedes’ pre-baseball golf – The Detroit News
New York â In the morning before Yoenis Cespedes’ quad flared up again and ultimately landed him on the disabled list, the outfielder participated in a round of golf Wednesday.
The team had been trying to help Cespedes get as close to full strength by giving him time to rest, yet here was the injured outfielder, an avid golfer, opting for physical activity.
Though it’s impossible to say the golf led to Cespedes’ quad flaring up during his final at-bat, it did not sit well with Mets fans on social media when he aggravated the quad that night.
“The golf is bad optics, let’s just start there,” Mets general manager Sandy Alderson said prior to Thursday’s game. “Our doctors have told us that probably had no impact on the injury, positive or negative, but let’s face it, to play golf during the day and then go out injured in the evening, it’s a bad visual. I think he recognizes that at this point. So we’ll go from there.”
Alderson has reached out to Cespedes’ representatives to discuss his golfing habits, but the larger issue for the Mets is they will now have to try to stay afloat without their best player. There is no timetable for a return yet, and an offense searching for production will now have to try to stay afloat.
The Mets are in Detroit for a three-game series at Comerica Park that gets underway Friday night.
An MRI revealed Cespedes, who was traded by the Tigers to the Mets last season in the deal that netted Michael Fulmer, did no further damage by playing through the injury. But Alderson admitted the team perhaps made a mistake by not sidelining him quicker after suffering the injury July 8.
“In retrospect, we probably should have just put him on the DL at the beginning of this episode, which is generally true with most injuries unfortunately,” Alderson said. “On the other hand, he wanted to try to play through it. We certainly had every interest in seeing him do that. … Hopefully at the end of two weeks he’ll be back and hopefully 100 percent or close to it, and we’ll go from there.”
Cespedes has said he believes golf helps his baseball swing, but this is the second time he’s suffered an injury after playing earlier in the day. Cespedes previously played prior to Game 4 of the NLCS last season and later had to leave the game early with shoulder soreness.
Mets manager Terry Collins defended Cespedes’ choice.
“I don’t care about perception. I deal with reality. And reality is, he was OK to play,” Collins said. “Reality is, he came back after his last at-bat and said, ‘My leg’s bothering me again.’ He got on base, ran the bases. It didn’t hurt him in the fourth, it didn’t hurt him in the sixth. It hurt him in the ninth. That’s reality. That’s what we have to deal with. We can’t worry about what happened in 12 in the afternoon.”
Teammate Kelly Johnson said it’s not an issue as long as player is able to play that night.
“Whatever gets you ready for 7:10 or 7:05,” Johnson said. “As long as you’re mentally and physically able to go, that’s not something that’s affecting that in any way. Whether that is or isn’t I wouldn’t be able to answer, but I know it’s something he’s done a long time.”
Alderson said his conversation with Cespedes’ representatives was “sort of a mutual agreement” about passing on golf for the time being, and does not see Cespedes’ decision as a lack of dedication.
“I think everybody is taking it seriously, I think Yoenis takes it seriously,” Alderson said. “But Yoenis has his own personal life that sometimes is larger than life.â
He added: “Look, Yoenis made a month’s worth of effort to try to play through it and I don’t’ think we can lose sight of that fact.”
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