Robinson Cano Seattle Mariners








Robinson Cano
The Robinson Cano trade puts the Seattle Mariners in contention in the AL West. I can see both sides of the issue. The New York Yankees are an organization that no matter how good you are, everyone falls in line as a soldier. There’s no one bigger than the game in New York City.

Robinson Cano made his name with with the New York Yankees, he’s one of the most prolific hitters in baseball history, I think that history will play that out unless he has an injury that holds him back. Baseball is certainly an overuse syndrome sport and it does wear you down, I can attest to that firsthand, but so far he’s had a healthy career and when you’re healthy this long, and being 31 right now he knows how to pace himself and play at the speed that let’s him play healthy. Robinson Cano is obviously on track to be a Hall of Fame player and Seattle is going to benefit from his presence in the lineup.

You have to know the Yankees simply look at it from a realistic financial perspective, and weighing the odds on longevity, because the last three years of the contract, it’s never a guarantee relating to a player’s healthy performance till age 41. They were willing to go to age 38 and he feels it’s 41.  If there’s one thing history shows is the players eventually wear out but here’s to wishing the best for Cano and I know the NY Yankees, being the classy organization they are, wish him the very best as well.

I look back at Don Mattingly who I played with for five years in the early 90’s, and to me he’s a Hall of Fame player but he had a back injury that kept him from his explosive natural potential that would have allowed him to be that “best hitter in baseball” caliber for the time needed to play out the career every player dreams of playing out so his ability would match his career ending numbers.  Toward the end of his career, and granted it got shortened from injury, if there was a rain delay or anything he had to shut it down.  When you’re playing with injuries you get one shot to warm-up and play the game.  You have to play at a pace that you can play with in the long-term.

When signing a big contract it’s a tricky thing and no one can see the future. I think Don Mattingly was called Donnie baseball because he was the Epitome of a Hall of Fame Player, although some question whether he just didn’t get enough at bats, yet I think when it all comes down to it, when they weigh all the factors…history will play out for him as the prime example, for baseball that is, of the whole being greater than the sum of it’s parts.

Don Mattingly will be in the Hall of Fame one day I hope…call me crazy, but I played with Don and he is one of the best players to ever play major-league baseball. Considering there were only between 17,000 and 18,000 players on the planet to ever play in the major leagues… If it’s me I put Don Mattingly in the Hall of fame.

I think the situation with Robinson Cano, right now he’s a young healthy player, but you can never predict these things.  I think the New York Yankees are thinking of it strictly business and sure they hate to lose a player like Robinson Cano, but they have the money to purchase a replacement.  This is about the same time, maybe a little earlier that Don Mattingly started having back issues and at that point their careers were similar.

It will be difficult for fans at the start of 2014 missing Cano, it’s not the same to replace a player such a loved player for the first couple of years, although years in this technological age are about 10 minutes, because he was so loved by the fans in New York, but the fans will love the next Robinson Cano in New York City.  For me I compare him to be like a Don Mattingly, and you hate see him ever leave New York because you’ll for ever think of him as a New York Yankee, yet Don Mattingly is now living in Los Angeles as the manager of the LA Dodgers.  I’m happy for Don, I saw him at the winter meetings and there’s no doubt he’s in his element.  Don Mattingly back in the spotlight as Donny Baseball.

The Seattle Mariners arguably now have the premier player of the decade. You think  of a second baseman like Robinson Cano in my era, the mid 80’s to mid 90’s, it was Robby Alomar. You wouldn’t believe the conversations during the game among the players… It’s a long season, 162 games plus playoffs spring training, instructional league, earl spring minicamp.  You have a lot of time on the bench and as a catcher in the bullpen during the games if you’re not playing that day, there’s always a conversation going on about something.  With me as a left-handed hitter I got two thirds of the bats because of all the right handed pitching, yet that’s still a lot of time on the bench, or in the bullpen, and you gotta keep your mind busy and so it was usually a conversation about something or other.

One of the things we talked about was, if you had one player who would have to play every position who would be? It was our general consensus that Robby Alomar would be that guy.  I remember Robby Alomar playing for the Toronto Blue Jays in the new beautiful Sky Dome, and living at the hotel in the ballpark.  I remember thinking he was living a charmed life and of course he was. And for Robinson Cano’s era, he would be that guy I would put at every position.

Now things are set in stone now and Robinson Cano will now be the toast of Seattle and he’s certainly one of my favorite hitters, in another post I’ll break it down.  If there’s one thing I know it’s that Seattle is a best kept secret for youth baseball. Seattle has so many youth that are crazy about baseball, and they love it to death. To me and I’m biased I guess, but Seattle is coffee and baseball. It’s a great place to visit, it’s a great place to live and Robinson Cano will have a great home in Seattle.

We have lots of family and friends who live in the area.  My wife and I are always trying to carve out the time to get up there, and my kids are going up there all the time to visit their cousins, it’s one of their favorite places to visit because they get to see family.

Wrap up:

  1. I can see merit for both sides for the NY Yankees and for Robinson Cano wanting to end his career…hopefully a hall of fame career in NYC.
    • Yankees financial have to bet on a healthy Cano for 7 (38) vs 10 years to (41)
    • Players aren’t always healthy for their whole career and (41) he may very well be productive like Bonds was up to the last moment of his career.
  2. Cano made his mark in NYC like Mattingly, yet like Don Mattingly you see a player as being pure Yankee and Mattingly always will be but things are temporal in baseball and in Mattingly’s case he had problems with his back at the 10 year mark and in baseball and that’s just the nature of the game.
  3. Robinson Cano is on pace for easily becoming  a future hall of fame player and he will be the toast of Seattle if he stays healthy…which he most likely will, because he’s been healthy so far and has hit his stride in his playing rhythm to play without getting injured.
  4. Robinson Cano and Robbie Alomar both Second Basemen:
    • They are similar being the guy who you’d want at every position in the field and at every place in the batting order.
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