Now nearly eight months later, a New York Post report that surfaced Friday explaining the situation leading to the injury is quite … boaring.
The outlet reports that, according to multiple sources, Cespedes broke his ankle while tending to a wild boar. The 34-year-old reportedly has traps set up around his ranch in part to prevent the animals from interacting with humans. A boar was removed from a trap, possibly by Cespedes, and “either charged toward Cespedes or startled him,” causing the power-hitting outfielder to step into a hole. A return to action in 2019 was already uncertain but this incident cemented that he would miss the entire campaign.
Cespedes reportedly told the Mets “that he was trying to sidestep a boar.” Representatives from Cespedes’s camp and the Mets paid a visit to the ranch the next day and left believing what he had told them. Officials from the Commissioners Office and the MLB Players Association stopped by the ranch later on and echoed the sentiments of Cespedes’s representatives and the team.
Cespedes’s midseason addition in 2015 helped vault the Mets to their first World Series appearance in 15 years. He smashed 17 home runs and 44 RBIs in 57 games, earning a three-year, $75 million pact after the season that contained a clause allowing him the ability to opt out after the 2016 World Series. With 31 home runs and an all-star appearance under his belt in 2016, he did just that, and re-upped with the club on the $110 million contract.
The events surrounding his injury could help explain Cespedes’ significant contract restructuring in December that brought his base salary for 2020 down from $29.5 million to $6 million. The New York Post also reported that the Mets were withholding Cespedes’s pay last season, and contemplated making the rest of his deal non-guaranteed. Those moves prompted the involvement of the Commissioners Office and MLBPA.
The Mets reportedly fielded calls from teams interested in trading for the two-time all-star last month after news of his restructured contract became known. Any team acquiring Cespedes will have no doubt about his talent but will be gambling with a player who has mostly been unavailable the last three seasons.
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