Yoenis Cespedes struggles in field, at plate, on bases in Mets' Game 4 loss

NEW YORK -- Daniel Murphy had the most visible transgression of Saturday’s game, when an eighth-inning grounder rolled under his glove at second base, opening the door for three runs to score. But Yoenis Cespedes had a late miscue, too, as the New York Mets lost to the Kansas City Royals, 5-3, on Saturday at Citi Field in Game 4 of the World Series.

After the Mets placed two runners on base with one out in the ninth against Royals closer Wade Davis, Lucas Duda lined out to third base. Cespedes, the potential tying run, strayed too far off first base on the play and was doubled off to complete the demoralizing defeat.

“I thought it was going to touch the grass, so I didn’t think it would turn into a double play,” Cespedes said through an interpreter.

Added manager Terry Collins: “I’m sure the first thought in his mind is, ‘I’m going to score on any ball that gets in the gap.’”

Cespedes, a free-agent-to-be like Murphy, has had a quiet World Series at the plate. He was 1-for-4 with two strikeouts Saturday, giving him a .176 average and one RBI in the Fall Classic.

He has endured a few suspect plays in center field, too. Similar to the inside-the-park homer in Game 1, Cespedes awkwardly played a fly ball to left-center from Salvador Perez in the fifth inning on Saturday. The ball ricocheted off Cespedes’ leg and Perez was credited with a double. Perez ultimately scored on Alex Gordon’s single for the first run against Steven Matz.

“As I was coming closer, I thought it was going to land,” Cespedes said. “It wasn’t exactly where I thought it landed. So, as I started picking up velocity, it just kind of got messed up.”