On the links with Yoenis Cespedes

Associated Press

Most of us first heard about Yoenis Cespedes‘ golf game last October when, to the chagrin of some in the media and some fans the media riled up, Cespedes decided to take in a round before a playoff game against the Cubs. The controversy, to the extent it even qualified as one, basically ended when the Mets got past the Cubs and moved on to the World Series.

Since then we’ve learned that Cespedes has a passion for golf and spends all of his free time on the links. Yesterday, as part of a video shoot for SNY, a couple of members of the media joined Yo on the course as he played nine holes with Jeff Wilpon. Marc Carig of Newsday was one of them and his story is a great read.

Warning: If you’re a long-struggling golfer, you may wish to skip it because it will only make your blood boil. See, Cespedes never picked up a club until 2014 and now regularly shoots no worse than the low 80s, often breaking that (he shot a 79 yesterday). Indeed, his first-ever round was the only time he shot over 100. Ballplayers probably get less credit for freakish athleticism than football or basketball players, but make no mistake: they’re not like you and me. Cespedes certainly isn’t.

Bonus fun: Cespedes’ 79 came despite the fact that he didn’t have his cigarettes with him. He smokes Marlboro reds out on the course and says they help him to relax. Because they were taping his first nine, however, he had to go without. His reaction to that: “Ay yai yai!”

But he soldiered on and played through it. Because he’s a ballplayer.

Tyler Glasnow scheduled to rejoin Rays’ rotation

Jonathan Dyer-USA TODAY Sports

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Tampa Bay Rays right-hander Tyler Glasnow is scheduled to rejoin the rotation at Cleveland after missing nearly 14 months because of Tommy John surgery.

The Rays’ Opening Day starter last year hasn’t pitched this season after undergoing the procedure on Aug. 4, 2021.

“I think we’re pretty confident he’ll be starting for us,” Tampa Bay manager Kevin Cash said before the game with Toronto. “This is the first time he’s thrown pain-free in quite some time, so he’s encouraged by it.”

The 6-foot-8 right-hander went 5-2 with a 2.66 ERA in 14 starts last year and is a key addition as the Rays near a wild-card spot.

“Compared to the past, like, three years it feels way better as far as postday and the week leading into starts and stuff,” Glasnow said. “It’s good to have an UCL, you know.”

Cash said Glasnow will throw around 45 pitches in his initial outing, which should allow him to go two or three innings.

“Two innings of Glasnow is still a huge plus for our team,” Cash said. “Like to get three innings. If we do, great. If we don’t, that’s fine, too.”

Glasnow allowed one run, one hit, four walks and had 14 strikeouts over seven innings in four starts with Triple-A Durham.

“I’m really excited,” Glasnow said. “I’m approaching it like normal, staying on routine. Feels normal.”

Glasnow signed a two-year, $30.35 million contract that will delay the start of his free agency by one year last month. He’s making $5.1 million this year and will get $5.35 million next season and $25 million in 2024, which is the first year he would have been eligible for free agency.