Detroit Tigers trade Cespedes to Mets

BALTIMORE — Brad Ausmus said he didn’t know what was going to happen to Yoenis Cespedes.

But he knew. The Detroit Tigers’ leftfielder was going to get traded — and soon.

“I’ll keep him as long as they let me,” he said after Thursday night’s game.

But the Tigers’ front office didn’t let Ausmus pen Cespedes into the lineup for Friday’s game.

In their third trade leading up to Thursday’s 4 p.m. trade deadline, the team sent Cespedes, a free agent-to-be, to the New York Mets.

In return, the Tigers are getting right-handed pitching prospects Michael Fulmer and Luis Cessa. They were ranked the Mets’ No. 7 and No. 16 prospects, respectively, by mlb.com.

Fulmer, 22, was a first-round pick of the Mets in 2011. He is 6-2 with a 1.88 ERA in Double-A this season. Cessa, 23, has split this season between Double-A and Triple-A. In Double-A, he’s 7-4 with a 2.56 ERA. In Triple-A, he’s 0-3 with an 8.51 ERA.

Cespedes, 29, is well on his way to compiling a career year. Through 102 games, he is hitting .293 with 18 home runs and 61 RBIs. In Thursday night’s 9-8 win over the Orioles, he went 3 for 5 with a home run and three RBIs.

He was acquired in an offseason trade with the Boston Red Sox for starting pitcher Rick Porcello and in his half-year-plus with the Tigers, has lived up to his billing as a game changer with outstanding offensive and defensive skills.

Cespedes possesses one of the best outfield arms in baseball and is tied for fifth in the major leagues with nine outfield assists on the year.

Hailing from Cuba, he fit in well with the Tigers’ Latin-laden clubhouse and, according to a recent report from Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal, is interested in signing with the Tigers long-term in the offseason.

Due to a clause in his contract, signed before the 2012 season with the Oakland Athletics, Cespedes is ineligible for a free agent qualifying offer and if not re-signed five days after the World Series, will be granted his release. If he were to stay with the Tigers and not re-sign in that five-day period, he would be released and the team would be at a disadvantage in signing him unless he were willing to sit out until May 15 of next season.

avatar

Posted by Tribune News Services

Leave a Reply