Mets’ only hope is Yoenis Cespedes ignoring them

ATLANTA — The Mets got their backbone back Saturday.

Yoenis Cespedes made it clear he is the master of his ship and for a few days he will listen to the Mets, but after that, all bets are off. He will be playing this game his way.

Sure, this sounds a lot like Noah Syndergaard not wanting to get that MRI exam, but Cespedes is all-in his way.

It’s the only chance the Mets have, and with one lightning bolt of a swing in the ninth inning he ignited the Mets offense for the day as Cespedes lined a grand slam to left-center to lift the Mets to a desperately needed 6-1 win over the Braves at SunTrust Park in the first game of a split doubleheader.

In the nightcap, with Cespedes on the bench to rest his legs, the Mets continued hitting as they rolled to a sweep with an 8-1 victory over the hapless Braves.

The grand slam was Cespedes’ second hit of the day after not playing in a major league game since April 27.

I asked him if he was OK with sitting Game 2 and maybe Sunday’s series finale.

“For the moment, yes, starting next week we’ll see if I feel 100 percent. At that point, I’m not taking days off,’’ Cespedes said firmly through an interpreter.

Cespedes will continue to call the shots. He made that crystal clear.

“I know they have a plan for me but nobody knows my body better than I do,’’ he said before the game. “So if they want to give me days off it kind of has to be based off of how I feel and how I feel my body is reacting.’’

So, he is going to make the final call. He nodded yes.

The wins moved the Mets to 27-33.

“I think there is still time and we still got a chance,’’ Cespedes said. “I feel good, but the problem is, in my mind right now, I don’t know that I can run 100 percent at this point yet.’’

That will take time.

When he blasted his grand slam, the fifth of his career, Cespedes was just about 30 feet down the first-base line. You don’t have to run even 30 percent when you hit it out of the ballpark.

Since Aug. 1, 2015, the Mets are 119-89 (.572) when Cespedes plays at any percent and 31-41 (.431) when he does not play.

“While I was out, I was working with [Mike] Barwis and he has given me a very long routine, it usually takes me about an hour to get through it, so I think it’s what’s going to help me stay healthy,’’ Cespedes said of his new approach to preparing for a game. “I think my elasticity will improve.’’

Cespedes moved well on a fly ball that he had to go back on to catch in the seventh inning. After the game he said of that play, “I had made two plays like that in Florida, I didn’t feel anything there and I didn’t feel anything here.’’

Cespedes is in the Robinson Cano stage of his career. Don’t expect him to be busting it down the line anytime soon. That’s just the way it is going to be and the Mets and critics are going to have to live with that fact.

His bat is too valuable and Cespedes has to stay in the lineup the best way that he can and if hustle suffers, so be it. Cespedes being less than 100 percent is better than most players at 100 percent.

“He’s a special guy,’’ Terry Collins said. “Michael Conforto did a great job but can you imagine what would have happened if we had both of them.’’

The Mets will have to get the pitching too and in that first game Robert Gsellman was terrific, going 6 ²/₃ innings without allowing a run and working through two first-inning errors by shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera.

This was Yo’s day, and the Mets plan to take it cautious but will not put him in a bubble.

“If he gets hurt he gets hurt,’’ Collins said. “But we’ll be very, very careful with him. He showed you today he is a difference-maker.’’

Even when he is not 100 percent.