On the eve of the 2018 season, the budding relationship between new manager Mickey Callaway and incumbent star Yoenis Cespedes is a happy one.
That started, Cespedes said Wednesday, even before spring training, when the two got together for some quality time before the daily grind began.
Callaway said he has visited Cespedes’ house and has had dinner with the slugging leftfielder.
“For me, the best thing is he’s really young,” Cespedes, 32, said of his 42-year-old boss. “He thinks more the way we think, the players. I think that’s a big [plus].”
Cespedes’ on-field abilities — when he’s healthy — speak for themselves. Callaway is looking forward to letting them do just that.
“I talked to Yo a lot,” Callaway said. “He’s a great person. He’s an unbelievably talented ballplayer. He, when he’s on the field, can be an MVP-type player.
“We’re going to try to put him in the best place to be out on the field as often as possible. I think that’s his goal, too, so I’m pretty proud of the way he worked in the offseason to get to this point, and we’re going to have some fun watching Yo play some baseball this year.”
Brentz clears waivers
Outfielder Bryce Brentz, claimed from the Pirates Monday, cleared waivers and was outrighted to Triple-A Las Vegas. He’ll serve as upper-level minors depth alongside Matt den Dekker for if and when the Mets need another outfielder.
Brentz, 29, has played only 34 major-league games (none last year) but slashed .271/.334/.529 with 31 homers in 120 Triple-A games last year.
Todd Frazier, a native of Toms River, New Jersey, said he had about two dozen ticket requests for Opening Day, his first with a New York team. He was traded to the Yankees in midseason last year and signed with the Mets last month. “I’m 32 years old and I’m joking around like I’m 12 right now because you have that nervous energy going,” Frazier said. “When they announce your name, the excitement starts.” . . . The Empire State Building was lit up orange and blue Wednesday night in celebration of the Mets’ opener Thursday.