MLB Trade Rumors: Does Robinson Cano want to return to Yankees?
When Robinson Cano put his signature on the 10-year, $240 million deal to become the face of the Seattle Mariners, there was some questions as to whether it was the right move for either party. Would Cano be truly happy helping a team rebuild? Would the Mariners handcuff themselves under the weight of such an enormous deal?
While many questioned the deal at the time, the hindsight on the pairing seems to have all parties second-guessing whether the match-up was truly a good one. Now two years into the deal, one of the parties may be interested in finding a way out.
According to John Harper of the New York Times, sources close to Robinson Cano have reported that the the second baseman isn't interested in staying with the Mariners and would like to find a way to return to the Yankees.
"But even if Cano has had the best intentions as a Mariner, one long-time friend who spoke to him recently says the second baseman is not happy in Seattle, especially with a new regime in charge there now, and that he'd love to somehow find his way back to New York." – (h/t John Harper, NY Daily News)
Despite a slow start to his 2015 season, Cano has remained a solid contributor for the Mariners, producing a .300/.358/.450 slash-line with an average of 18 home runs and 80 RBI per season. The power numbers are a bit down from his time playing in the friendly confines of Yankee Stadium, but regardless, he has remained productive on a team that otherwise struggles to generate much offensively.
However, his production doesn't appear to be at the root of his desire to leave. Instead, Cano is reportedly taking offense to questions of his hustle and attitude by former Mariners' coach Andy Van Slyke. In an interview last week, Van Slyke dogged Cano and blamed him for the coaches that were replaced in Seattle this offseason.
"Your highest paid, supposedly best player – I mean Robbie's not a bad guy, let me say that before I say anything bad about how he played. But Robinson Cano was the single worst third-place, everyday player I've ever seen – I've ever seen for the first half of a baseball season," Van Slyke said. "He couldn't drive home Miss Daisy if he tried. He couldn't get a hit when it mattered. He played the worst defense I've ever seen at second base. I mean I'm talking about the worst defensive second baseman ever – I've ever seen in 20 years in the big leagues." – (h/t NY Daily News)
All that said, the chances the Mariners have in moving Cano to New York or any team are slim. Few teams in baseball, the Yankees included, are willing to take on eight-years and $192 million of guaranteed money on a second baseman who will enter 2016 at 33-years-old. Couple that with a likely high return package of prospects and questions about attitude and hustle, and the Mariners are likely stuck.