At 1-3, the A’s are off to a rather sluggish start. That does not mean, however, that each member of the green-and-gold is stumbling out of the gates. On the contrary, the A’s have seen a whole lot from their $36 million center fielder Yoenis Cespedes. Over the season’s first four regular season games, the team’s new power hitter has tallied three home runs and has driven in 7 runs.
The 26 year old rookie has certainly lived up to the serious hype that surrounded him in Cuba, but it is important to remain realistic when evaluating Cespedes’ talent and overall impact on the Athletics offense. Truth is, the guy has talent. Billy Beane and the A’s would not hand over $36 million if Cespedes wasn’t talented.
The one thing that many critics of Cespedes are pointing to early in the year is his strikeout rate. The A’s power hitter has struck out a staggering 7 times this year. Strikeouts are expected, though, especially with a guy like Cespedes, who is coming to MLB without much experience in a North American system. Seeing more and more pitching, in the end, should help Cespedes.
Cutting back on his strikeouts would make him a viable player worth acquiring in your fantasy baseball league this year. He’ll likely pile up the strikeouts, but when Cepsedes does make contact, it is hard not to notice. As we’ve all seen already on Friday’s home Opener against the Mariners.
Bob Melvin has already acknowledged the fact that Cespedes will be tested by major league pitchers throughout the season. Strikeouts will happen. But so will the home runs. With Cespedes, the A’s finally have a true power hitter, or so it seems, on their hands. After so many swing and misses, the A’s have finally acquired a top threat to help the middle of their lineup this year in Cespedes.
With that, I’ll get to the poll: How Many Home Runs Do You Think Cespedes Will End Up Hitting This Year? Also, hit the comment section below and sound off on how excited you are about the “Cuban Missile” launching in Oakland.