"Nationals, Let Your People Go...."
Mets removed a huge obstacle in re-signing Yoenis Cespedes by voiding the clause in his contract that would require the Mets to resign Cespedes within five days of the last game of the World Series. If they were not able to resign him within that period they would not be able to sign Cespedes to a new contact until May 15 well into the start of the next season and taking them out of possible contention for the free agent.
The Mets now have a longer period to re-sign Yoenis who has done nothing but good for the team since joining the team at the trade deadline. Due to the mutual benefit both parties could gain from removing the clause Cespedes representatives and the Mets changed the contract agreements. Now the Mets can be like any other MLB club and sign Cespedes during the entirety of free agency and the off season.
Cespedes is in the final season of his four year, $36 million contract he signed with the A's in 2012. The original contract called for Cespedes to be released when the contract expired and no team can make a qualifying offer to a released player.
The Mets are in the middle of a playoff race and hopefully will have the chance to make a run in the playoffs. It would have been extremely difficult to negotiate a contract in the closing weeks of the regular season and into the playoffs let alone the distraction and media buzz it could create. The Mets making this change makes them a likely front runner to land Cespedes in the offseason but also clears any distractions that could have occurred this season.
With the Mets this year, Cespedes is batting .307 with 34 RBIs and 13 home runs in just 35 games. He is second in the National league with 37 doubles this season and has been the offense spark the Mets have desperately needed all season long. The team and especially the offense is playing with at level fans haven’t seen in years. Re-signing him would mean a lot to this team and city for their long term future especially for a player who had an RBI double to help lead the Mets back from a 7-1 deficit to a dramatic late game win.
However, even with the recent contract changes the Mets might not be able to sign Cespedes because of their history of not spending money to sign big name players. The slugger is expected to command a multi-year deal in excess of $130 million with predications of a contract as high as $175 million.