The 2016 MLB season for the New York Mets ended in a whimper at the hands of Madison Baumgarner and the San Francisco Giants 3-0 here in CitiField. Questions were in the dozens during the season which now resonate louder into the off-season. The state of Jeurys Familia and his penchant for playoff non-success, the fragility of a young starting staff, and most important, where will Yoenis Cespedes play next year.
It was a year of making news for Yoenis starting with his first large contract payoff. What followed made the circus seem less entertaining by comparison. Cespedes money spending from jewelry to an assortment of animals to large homes made headlines on the back pages often.
His injury issues which revolved around his quad, ehich landed him on the DL this year kept the Mets from fully exercising its offensive muscle during a season where many pieces went inactive in 2016. When it was discovered that he played golf during his leisure hours, he did not win any sympathy votes.
But he rallied in the final month to help the Mets grab one of the wild-card berths and home field for that one game playoff. His penchant for big home runs can carry a team. But in the ninth inning, Cespedes flyed out in what might be his last at bat for the New York Mets. Cespedes negotiated an opt-out clause after this season which leaves the possibility that he can go play anywhere else as a free-agent if he chooses to use the opt-out.
The Mets success in this playoff was going to be one of the deciding factors of whether he wanted to commit long term to the Mets organization. The nightmare scenario would be to see the now 30-year old power hitting centerfielder move across the river to the rival New York Yankees who also are in need of a power bat on the upside of his career. After his 30 home run performance despite injuries, he will be a well-sought out.
He has already proven with Oakland and Boston that he can hit anywhere. The use of the DH to rest weary bodies also serves as an attractive alternative as he has become brittle. The question for teams who want to make a bid for him is the baggage he brings as mentioned beforehand. He tends to wear out his welcomes but many are willing to gamble. Cespedes, who has moved a lot, may look to the Yankees since he would not have to leave New York. However, staying with the Mets is not the worst of scenarios but depends on his view of them as World Series contenders in 2017.