What a crazy morning in baseball news today. When I woke up, the news said that the talks between the Mariners and Robinson Cano had fallen apart. Less than an hour later, seemingly every news outlet in baseball was reporting that the two sides had agreed to a ten-year contract.
The Mariners are not saying anything until the deal is signed, sealed, and delivered. However, the consensus is that it is all but done.
I think it’s a great play for the Mariners, who needed to do something. This certainly qualifies as something.
The status quo was not working. The farm system was unlikely to churn out an average- or above-average player at each of the nine positions, plus a pitching staff, all during a six-year (pre-free agency) window. They were never going to get a group of 3-4 key, hand-picked cheaper free agents to sign all at once and supplement the team, unless they somehow got them all together in the same room for a Powerpoint presentation explaining how they could join forces to make it work. That’s just not realistic.
Cano changes that. Now there is a superstar offensive player to build around, plus of course Felix is still here. The other players – the complimentary players, the middle-tier free agents – they will now have a reason to come to Seattle.
Naysayers will cry, “What about the budget?” to which I reply “Who cares? I certainly don’t.” It’s not our money. The team knows its revenues and cash flow and future projections. The team also knows that if it starts winning, it will make more money. When it comes to their own finances, the Mariners know what they are doing – and if they don’t, that’s their problem. “But if they get saddled with bad contracts in the future, they’ll be unable to win!” OK, yeah, so how is that different from the last ten years?
Cano is just the start. There are plenty of reports saying this is just the beginning for the Mariners – they have more money budgeted to spend on payroll, and they will be active in trades. The Winter Meetings begin on Monday, and the rumors are going to be flowing.
- We start with the original report from Enrique Rojas saying that Robinson Cano and the Mariners have an agreement.
- The Mariners did not confirm the Cano deal, Bob Dutton writes. The News Tribune also has a gallery of Cano photos.
- John McGrath hopes the Cano deal gets done.
- Ryan Divish has the latest on trade rumors, etc.
- Greg Johns has all of the up-to-the-minute facts about the Cano situation right here.
- Baseball Prospectus says the deal is great for the Mariners (subscription required).
- Keith Law says it is a good signing for the Mariners, but they have to do more if they want to win (ESPN Insider required).
- Dave Cameron takes the long view of the reported Cano contract.
- Grant Brisbee writes that the key for the Mariners is not screwing up the next three years.
- National baseball reporter Richard Justice writes that a Cano signing would put the Mariners back on the map.
- Former Mariners Assistant GM Tony Blengino took a stab at projecting Cano’s age curve.
- Cano was never considered a top prospect, John Sickels somewhat inadvertently reminds us.
- With his reported contract, Robinson Cano can purchase either 89 million Dick’s cheeseburgers, or one Boeing 787 Dreamliner.
- Jay Z became the third agent to land a $200 million deal, if this is indeed a done deal.
- The Mariners made the Willie Bloomquist signing official.
- Mariners GM Jack Zduriencik talked before the Winter Meetings – but as usual, he didn’t say much.
What a Friday. Have a great weekend!