Despite the fact that it’s March 3rd and spring training games have already begun, there are still more than a few free agents out there who are looking for jobs. Those players are holding workouts for teams still, and on Tuesday it was 2-time All-Star Yoenis Cespedes who had a workout in Florida. The Cincinnati Reds were one of 11 teams that had a representative in attendance according to Ken Davidoff of The New York Post.
Does it mean that the Reds are looking to add to their outfield? Not necessarily. The Reds, historically, have tried to be present at workouts for just about all players. First, you never know what you’re going to see. You want to be there in case something special comes out of nowhere. But you might also want to be there in case something doesn’t happen – having that information available if the player signs somewhere else is useful to know about.
For a player like Yoenis Cespedes, having new information is very useful. The outfielder missed all of the 2019 season due to an injury, and then he played in just eight games in the 2020 season before opting out of the year. Now 35-years-old, it’s probably a gamble to bring the outfielder in on a guaranteed contract given that he’s essentially not played for the last two seasons – one of which was missed entirely due to a rather serious injury.
But it’s not just the last two seasons that are a tad concerning with regards to Yoenis Cespedes. In the 2018 season he managed to play in just 38 games. He was productive in that span, but he missed most of the year. The year prior to that he played in just half of the Mets games. Again, he was productive in that span, hitting .292/.352/.540 – but he missed 81 games. You have to go back to the 2016 season when he played in 132 games and was an All-Star to have a year in which he managed to stay on the field regularly.
It would be rather surprising for Cincinnati to jump in here unless they were simply blown away by what they saw. And if that’s the case, someone else was probably blown away, too, making it unlikely that it would make sense to pick the Reds from Cespedes’ standpoint given that the franchise already has Nick Senzel, Nick Castellanos, Jesse Winker, Shogo Akiyama, and Aristides Aquino all vying for playing time and as of the current time – no designated hitter to try and spread out some of those at-bats.