Yoenis Cespedes plays more games than Robinson Cano in 2020
Go bold or go home right!
On the surface with everything that Yoenis Cespedes has gone through over the last year, this seems quite impossible but maybe it is not entirely out of the realm of possibility.
Robinson Cano was quite banged up in 2019 and missed significant time with a hamstring injury. He also was hit on the hand several times this past season.
At 37 years of age, he is not a spring chicken anymore so eventually, if it has not happened already (it kind of has), Cano will hit a wall and start to slow down.
Earlier this offseason a video surfaced from Endy Chavez showing Cespedes taking batting practice. Unfortunately swinging a bat is the easiest part of rehab for someone that has not only had their heels surgically repaired but is also recovering from a broken ankle.
However, it is encouraging to see Cespedes do some type of baseball activities.
He is still a ways away but this is a contract year so he will be motivated to get healthy and make an impact on this team. If Cespedes can give the Mets 80% of the performance, he gave in 2015 then the 2020 Mets could make some noise.
If Cespedes is healthy he is going to need a position to play since the National League has yet to adopt the Designated Hitter. That position is going to be left field.
If this comes to fruition, Carlos Beltran will have to get creative and will probably have to make some difficult decisions, starting with the outfield positioning.
If Cespedes is playing left field then the outfield alignment is best suited with Cespedes-Nimmo-Conforto left to right assuming they do not acquire a full-time center fielder, which would complicate things even more.
With that outfield alignment, it would mean that Jeff McNeil would be the full-time third baseman. An argument can be made what McNeil’s best position truly is, second, third, or outfield but this would mean that assuming J.D. Davis does not get traded that he would move to the bench.
The complicated part becomes if Davis and McNeil are playing well and Cano is struggling how do you align all the fielders on the days that Cespedes plays.
However, there is a scenario where the alignment could be Cespedes-Nimmo-Conforto left to right in the outfield with Davis at third and McNeil at second with Cano on the bench.
The goal is to win as many games as possible and that means playing the guys that are playing the best and give the Mets the best shot at winning the most games. If that means sitting Robinson Cano, then this prediction may not be so bold but money talks and sitting a guy who is getting paid $24M makes this a bold prediction.