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Yoenis Cespedes is feeling nostalgic while facing one of his former clubs for an interleague series.
The New York Mets outfielder said that he would like to finish his career where it started, with the Oakland Athletics, according to a report in the San Francisco Chronicle. He also said Bob Melvin of the A’s is his favorite manager.
Cespedes was traded, along with a draft pick, to the Boston Red Sox for Jon Lester and Jonny Gomes at the 2014 trade deadline.
It was a move that was supposed to give the A’s the pitching they needed to be a World Series contender (they had also acquired Jason Hammel and Jeff Samardzija from the Chicago Cubs a couple weeks earlier).
Instead, it backfired. The A’s were 66-42 at the time of the Cespedes trade and finished 88-74, barely getting into the playoffs before losing to the Kansas City Royals in the AL wild-card game. And, to top it off, they lost Lester in free agency during the offseason.
The journey didn’t stop for Cespedes. The Reds Sox traded him that offseason to the Detroit Tigers, who traded him to the Mets at the 2015 trade deadline.
According to the Chronicle, Cespedes said he told teammate Jeremy Blevins: “‘I don’t know how many years I’m going to play, but I’m going to play the last year of my career with Oakland.’ I don’t know if that’s possible or not, but that’s my goal.”
Also part of the goal, he said, was to again play for Melvin.
“I tell my guys here all the time that he’s the best manager for me so far,” Cespedes said. “I don’t think there’s a better manager than Melvin.”
Cespedes went into Friday’s game hitting .271 with nine homers and 22 RBI.
It could be awhile before Cespedes gets that shot at playing in Oakland again. He signed a five-year contract with the Mets after last season.