After dealing with nagging leg injuries this season, Yoenis Cespedes wants to change his workout regimen in a way that focuses on him being a more athletic player, he told the New York Post.
Cespedes, who has spent time on the disabled list with hamstring and quad injuries, wants to focus less on the weight training he put an emphasis on this offseason.
"I want to become more flexible, more athletic, have less bulk [in my legs]," Cespedes told the Post. "I want to do less weight lifting. I'm going to do some different things, I want to do yoga, more stretching. I want to be lighter. I want to come back around 210, lose about 15 pounds.''
While Cespedes has appeared in a little more than half of the Mets' games this season, manager Terry Collins applauds his effort for pushing to play as much as he can handle.
"Unless you completely rest your legs and you've had leg issues, they're going to be there,'' Collins said. "I tip my hat to him he has worked very, very hard on the hydration side to keep himself hydrated. If he stays aggressive with his foot speed, he can create some havoc on the bases.''
I'm glad to hear he is figuring this out, even though it was obvious to a lot of people when we watched video of him this past winter. He looked like he was training to fight Rocky, not hit fastballs. Also, as I'm sure he's figuring out (like the rest of us), the body breaks down more and more as we get older. It doesn't matter if you are or aren't a professional athlete. It has been a rough 12 months for Yo, who has repeatedly dealt with all sorts of leg issues.
Cespedes throws during a spring training game at the Palm Beaches. Steve Mitchell/USA TODAY Sports
It's a shame, too, because (in addition to crushing baseballs) he used to be such a smart, efficient base runner and outfielder, as well. I hope a more slimming, flexibility-based workout will help him get back to that, because he was among the best at cutting bases and running down fly balls in the gap. I don't think he's finished. The man is still capable of being the guy we watched the last few seasons and he's motivated and smart enough to figure out how to get back to that production.
By the way, if the Mets keep losing and fall totally out of the race(s), they may want to consider getting him a ton of rest or even shutting him down toward the end of the season to get him as strong as possible for 2018.