Robinson Cano left the Bronx this year to sign a $240 million deal in Seattle. What exactly is Seattle getting for its $240 million?
A guy who will consistently bat around .300, hit around 30 homers and drive in around 100 runs.
A guy who will give you decent defense.
A guy who bring star power and identity to a franchise that hasn’t mattered in many years.
And, a guy who will absolutely positively not bother to bust it down to first base. Ever.
A guy for whom the concept of hustling on every play is completely foreign.
A guy who doesn’t listen to his coaches no matter how much they try to break him of his lazy habits.
Don’t take it from me though, take it from Yankees hitting coach Kevin Long. Long has worked with Cano for years, and he said this to the New York Daily News about the former Yankee All-Star:
“If somebody told me I was a dog, I’d have to fix that. When you choose not to, you leave yourself open to taking heat, and that’s your fault. For whatever reason, Robbie chose not to.”
Long went on, “We all talked to him. I’m pretty sure Jeter talked to him a number of times. Even if you run at 80%, no one’s going to say anything. But when you jog down the line, even if it doesn’t come into play 98% of the time, it creates a perception.
“But he just wouldn’t make that choice to run hard all the time. The reasons aren’t going to make sense. He might say his legs didn’t feel good, or he was playing every day and needed to save his energy. To me there was no acceptable answer.”
Seattle fans, do you care that Robinson Cano doesn’t like to bust it down the line? That he comes up with lame excuses for his lack of hustle?
That a guy who doesn’t try hard all the time is now the face of your franchise?
That you’re paying that guy $240 million not only to rake but to be a leader and an example?
Robinson Cano may be a better offensive player than Derek Jeter ever was, but he’s got a long way to go before he becomes Derek Jeter in all those other ways that matter.