Yoenis Cespedes wants to finish his career with the team he began with, the Oakland Athletics in the city he’s never stopped loving. So what?
That’s what we learned before Friday’s series opener between Yoenis Cespedes‘ current team, the New York Mets and his old team, the A’s.
— Susan Slusser (@susanslusser) July 21, 2017
“I still love the A’s, they were the first team to give me an opportunity to play in the big leagues,’ Cespedes told the San Francisco Chronicle‘s Susan Slusser. “I love Oakland all the time.”
Apparently, the outfielder talks to his current teammate Jerry Blevins, with whom he played in Oakland, about his desire to finish his career where it started.
“I wish that happens,” Cespedes said of a return to the A’s. “I told Blevins, ‘I don’t know how many years I’m going to play, but I’m going to play the last year of my career with Oakland.’ I don’t know if that’s possible or not, but that’s my goal.”
Is it a strange thing to say, particularly before he’s about to play against his former club? You bet. But it was an honest answer, not the typical yawn-inducing, cookie-cutter response that today’s professional athletes are programmed to spit out.
That said, Cespedes might come to regret this next statement. “I tell my guys here all the time that he’s the best manager for me so far. I don’t think there’s a better manager than [Bob] Melvin.”
Ouch, Terry Collins. Ouch.
As you’d expect, Mets fans weren’t pleased with his remarks or with those, like Slusser, who tried to defend the Cuban-born slugger. Most of the tweets we’ve seen are filled with colorful four-letter words, but a few fans showed a bit more tact on Twitter.
You have to forgive Mets fans. We don't know how to have nice things.
— Rob (@tecetice77) July 22, 2017
Is it a weird thing for a guy to say, especially in the middle of the season? Of course. Could it create tension in the clubhouse? Sure. Would most of us feel offended if we were in Terry Collins’ shoes? Probably. Is it a big deal? Not at all.
Cespedes is signed through the 2020 season. He’s not going anywhere before then. He’ll be entering his age-35 season in 2021—who says the Mets will even want him around at that point? Or that he’ll still be able to play the outfield?
So puff out your chests and scream to your heart’s content if you must, but it’s not going to change anything. One day, after his days with the Mets are over, Cespedes is going to make his triumphant return to Oakland.
The only question is, which car will he drive to get there?