McDonald: Like Clockwork, Another Met Fiasco In A Sinking Season

It seems to happen every year.

Something happens with the Mets and something small becomes a public relations fiasco.

And usually it happens sometime in May when the Mets are struggling. However, this is a 60 game season, so it seems just right the circus comes back to town in Game No. 10.

Like clockwork, you got this release sent out to the media today:

“As of game time, Yoenis Céspedes has not reported to the ballpark today. He did not reach out to management with any explanation for his absence. Our attempts to contact him have been unsuccessful.”

Dribs and drabs started to come out. Cespedes was opting out, but forgot to tell the Mets. Then he was unhappy with his playing time and thought the Mets were holding him back not to trigger the bonus clauses in his contract.

So yeah, this incident has everything a Mets scandal one sixth into the season usually has. An unhappy player. Managements heavy handed way of handling it and of course, in the end, the Mets trying to save every nickel.

Nevermind, Cespedes looked like a player who hasn’t faced big league pitching in over two years and his lack of playing time by manager Luis Rojas seems warranted.It shows a lack of understanding from upper management of player concern in this COVID-19 environment.

Just 10 days after Van Wagenen received universal praise on how the club was handling the COVID protocols, this happens. Even with a 3-7 record, the Mets seemed pretty smary in the way they handled the virus. The problems were in Miami, Philly and St. Louis. Queens seemed like a pretty safe space.

But remember fiascos like this happen all the time in this organization. It doesn’t matter is the name is Minaya, Alderson or Van Wagenen, disfunction happens in Flushing.

Why?

Well, even if the GM changes, the Wilpons are still signing the checks and they haven’t done anything to dispel the notion they will save every penny if possible, especially if the season seems like it’s going south. After 10 games, things are not looking pretty.

The funny thing is, unlike past incidents, this one could have been swept right under the rug. There was only one New York reporter in Atlanta and there is no clubhouse access. With all the social distancing protocols in place, no one noticed Cespedes was gone. The Mets could have done their internal investigation and announced their DH was opting out of the season. No one would have blamed Cespedes and it would have been treated like some of the other big name players who opted out.

Instead in the name of “transparency,” another fiasco happens in Queens. It’s almost like a bad action sequel with the start always asking why is this happening to him again.

Hopefully all of this ends when the Wilpons finally sell. Hopefully the new ownership, be it Steve Cohen, A-Rod or the guys who run the Devils, will play it smart and not have these annual self-inflicted wounds.

As of right now, though, it’s business as usual. The 2020 Mets season is starting to look like another dumpster fire and the Wilpons are doing their best to make it a spectacular news story.

And thus, the book closes on Yoenis Cespedes, who carried the Mets to the World Series in 2015 and now leaves the organization. It seemed like a marriage made in heaven. The mercurial slugger playing for the mercurial organization. After all he went through to get back onto the field, what a sad end.

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