With regards to the New York Yankees “letting” the Seattle Mariners sign Robinson Cano away from them, ESPN.Com news service quoted the below from David Ortiz in his interview with WEE Radio in Boston. I will dissect one by one:
1) “Great news for us” but a blow to the rival New York Yankee.
Partially true. The Yankees lost a legit All-Star. However off-season moves should not be judged until the end of the off-season. It didn’t take long for the Yankees to sign Carlos Beltran after losing Cano. Not as good a regular season offensive player as Cano at this point in his career, but Beltran is clutch and I will take him in the playoffs over anyone except for Ortiz.
New York is likely not done yet and we will see whom else they bring in as a result of the money saved on Cano. If it is not pitching help then it doesn’t matter because they wouldn’t win with or without Cano.
Long term. This is a good move. No way Cano is worth 10 years and 240 million.
2) The Yankees lost “the face” of the team. “I couldn’t believe the Yankees let that walk away. He’s the face, as long as he played for the Yankees, he was the face of that ballclub. He was backing up everybody.”
Ludicrous. Um Mr. Ortiz, the Yankees have a shortstop, their Captain, perhaps you have heard him? His name is Derek Jeter. Cano has never been the face of this franchise. Not with Jeter, Mariano Rivera, Alex Rodriguez, Jorge Posada and Andy Pettitte on the team. Yes he had the potential to become it. But to date, when you thought New York Yankees, Cano was not the first face to come to mind.
Backing everyone up? In the one world series they won with Cano in 2009, there were at least five more Yankees more valuable than him (and that is being generous) with his .136 batting average, no home runs and one r.b.i..
Now that he will be the face of a franchise in Seattle, let’s see how he handles that pressure for the first time.
3) “This guy hurt us,” Ortiz said. “He is the guy that, you’re never going to forget about him because he puts up some monster numbers. He puts up some monster numbers…”
False! Let’s not confuse consistent numbers with “monster numbers”. Over thirty home runs one time in a career is not “monster”, nor is a .309 career regular season batting average or a .222 playoff batting average. Never won an MVP or batting title.
4) With regard to the length and size of Cano’s contract Ortiz told Wee: “That’s what the players are getting — young, talented players with the skills that he has, that’s what they’re getting,”.
Wrong again. Um there have been exactly three 10 year 200 plus million contracts ever given in baseball. And two of them were given to the same player, Alex Rodriguez, the other being Albert Pujols, so it is not “what they are getting”.
The Texas Rangers regretted the deal they gave A-Rod so much that after year three they paid the Yankees a huge sum of money to take him off their hands. Given his injuries, lack of production and likely pending suspension for steroids, it is fair to say the Yankees regret giving A-Rod, his second 10 year contract. Pujols isn’t working out well with the Angels either.
At least those players DID have monster numbers when they signed their contracts. A-Rod and Pujols were transcendent superstars, above and beyond all-stars (like Cano).
And Cano is not young. In baseball terms he is middle-aged and will be old at 41 years of age at the end of the contract.
5) Ortiz called Cano’s deal “well deserved.”
Really? Then where were all the teams lining up to sign him? Apparently, he received only two offers. One from the Yankees of 7 years and 175 million and one from Seattle, a team described as desperate to land a “name” free agent and one that they would HAVE to grossly overpay to get. And that is what they did.
Doesn’t mean Cano deserved it, it means he and his agents were able to find, literally, the one dumb owner and exploit his desperation.
6) “He makes the game look so easy…”
Half true. Cano does make the game look easy with his sweet swing and smooth play in the field. But his lack of hustle to first base on grounders is the antithesis of Derek Jeter and unbecoming of a would be face of a franchise.
There are things to respect about David Ortiz. One is his loyalty and “home team” discounts he has provided to Boston over years. Ortiz had similar options to Cano and has given his big market team a discount to help put a winner together, so it is a little ironic to hear him come out like this about Cano whose agents asked for an insulting and egregious 310 million for the Yankees to buy out his rights as a free agent when he was still under contract.