At this point, we should be glad the Mets aren’t just huddled in a circle, with those on the outside brandishing bats against the outside forces determined to destroy them.
There’s probably not enough space here to list the calamities that have cursed the Mets this summer; a season in which they were supposed to put up quite the fight and keep the NL East from being a lethargic dog pile with the Nationals sitting on top, grinning smugly. That’s almost exactly what’s happened, and the most recent misfortune inflicted upon New York is the loss of chief offensive weapon Yoenis Cespedes.
In his last two appearances, the outfielder has served as a pinch hitter and designated hitter, getting 6 AB in two games after sitting out three contests between July 30 and August 2 due to a flare-up in his right quadricep. “Continued discomfort” to the quad had the Mets place Cespedes on the DL last night and move Brendon Nimmo into his spot for the final game of their subway series against the Yankees.
Lagging behind the Nats by 8.5 games and a wild card spot by 2, losing a .292 hitter with a .916 OPS is quite the blow, but the quad problem is not new. Cespedes was haunted by the issue all through July—it forced him to miss the All-Star Game—and manager Terry Collins even stated his worries about the condition when it just wouldn’t get better.
“I’m concerned. The way he talked... we’ve got to keep a close eye on him.”
Naturally, people are going to turn on each other. Now that things are going poorly, one New York Post columnist is ready to complain about Cespedes’ golf habit (Cespedes had been golfing earlier on Wednesday):
You can blame Cespedes for bad judgment without blaming his hobby on complicating his recovery. These are not mutually exclusive things. And now the Mets’ leadership — starting with Collins, starting with Sandy Alderson — must ask themselves if maybe it wouldn’t have been worth a serious chat in the past few days, asking their offensive centerpiece to maybe put the clubs away while his leg was still howling.
It’s a mess. And now, Mark Teixeira is laughing at them. It’s a rough time to be a Met.