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.