Phillies: Mets unable to reach missing Yoenis Cespedes

Yoenis Cespedes #52 of the New York Mets (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
Yoenis Cespedes #52 of the New York Mets (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images) /

The Phillies’ rival Mets do not know the whereabouts of their star slugger

As the Philadelphia Phillies and Jake Arrieta gear up for their return to action on Monday against Gerrit Cole and the New York Yankees, their National League East rival New York Mets are dealing with a scary situation.

The Mets do not know the whereabouts of eight-year veteran outfielder Yoenis Cespedes. Their nationally televised Sunday afternoon game, away against the Atlanta Braves, proceeded onward without him.

“As of game time, Yoenis Cespedes has not reported to the ballpark today,” Mets general manager Brodie Van Wagenen said in a statement. “He did not reach out to management with any explanation for his absence. Our attempts to contact him have been unsuccessful.”

According to USA Today’s Bob Nightengale, Cespedes’ absence is not related to COVID-19, nor is his safety at risk. ESPN’s Jeff Passan later reported that the Mets sent security to his room and found it empty: “He had taken his belongings, just up and left, and through his agent informed the team mid-game that he was opting out.”

Cespedes, 34, is hitting .161/.235/.387 in eight games this season, doubling once and homering twice, while striking out nearly in half (15) of his 31 at-bats. Overall, in parts of eight seasons with the Oakland A’s, Boston Red Sox, Detroit Tigers and Mets, Cespedes has 173 doubles, 165 home runs, and 528 RBI; he played in just 119 combined games from 2017-19 due to injury.

The Phillies are currently scheduled to play the Mets, for the first time this season, home on August 14-16. Both teams will then meet at Citi Field for a four-game set, Sept. 4-6, before returning to Citizens Bank Park for their last of three series, Sept. 15-17.

It is good to hear the health and safety of Cespedes is not at risk, but, surely, the Mets (3-6) could have used him in their Sunday slate against the Braves (6-3). Cespedes is a two-time All-Star, as well as one-time Gold Glove and Silver Slugger awards winner.