Mariners Insider

Cano introduced, Mariners altered

Post by Todd Dybas / The News Tribune on Dec. 12, 2013 at 8:32 pm with 20 Comments »
December 12, 2013 8:33 pm
Robinson Cano checks out his new home park Thursday. / AP photo
Robinson Cano checks out his new home park Thursday. / AP photo

Robinson Cano was the last person into his press conference Thursday afternoon at Safeco Field.

He came in through a side door with a wide smile. He sat in the middle with his No. 22 jersey hanging behind him. He had just finished signing his 10-year, $240 million contract that is designed to keep him in Seattle past his 40th birthday.

Let’s get to some news, notes and quotes from the day:

> Cano often said signing with Seattle was not about the money.

“A lot of people say it was the money, ” Cano said. “It wasn’t about the money. It was more about the years. The contract that I get finish my career … play here for the next 10 years, finish my career. Not worry about anything.”

> He often said he thought the Mariners are on the right track, and that he doesn’t feel pressure from the massive contract.

“I know it’s going to take maybe a few years, but it’s a contract of 10 years,” Cano said. “We’re going to have time to build a championship team.”

> Cano’s agent, Brodie Van Wagenen, said the list of teams pursuing Cano started at about 25. It was reduced to nine or 10, then five, then three. He was asked about the gap between the Mariners’ offer and that of the runner-up for Cano.

“I’m not going to get into that,” Van Wagenen said.

> There were also reports out of New York that Mariners CEO Howard Lincoln and Cano’s representatives had a rift. Van Wagenen called that “make believe” and said Cano and the Mariners had agreed to terms the night before (Thursday, Dec. 5) those stories came out in New York.

> Cano wore No. 24 from 2006 on with the Yankees. He’ll wear 22 with the Mariners. He was asked if he contacted Ken Griffey Jr. about wearing 24, which is yet to be retired.

“No. No. I would never talk to him about 24. He’s a guy you have to show respect. If that happened, it would have to come from him. Says, you know what? You can use it. We know what he means to this city, who he was and what kind of player. Future Hall of Famer. You don’t go to a Hall of Famer and ask, ‘Can I use your number?’”

> One of the things stressed by Cano and Jack Zduriencik was the length of the contract was crucial. Zduriencik said he didn’t think a 7- or 8-year deal would have gotten it done. Cano, 31, talked about not wanting to wonder what was next when he was 37 or 38 years old.

> Both Zduriencik and Van Wagenen argued that the front of Cano’s deal will actually be viewed as a bargain, evening out the back-end when he will be paid $24 million annually into his 40s.

> Cano was asked if he thought the Yankees wanted him back.

“Honestly, I would say no. I didn’t feel respect,” he said.

> Cano said he talked to Felix Hernandez on the phone before signing. Hernandez told him the Mariners would treat him like family if he came to Seattle. Cano visited once, for a three-hour meeting, at the end of negotiations.

> Cano said he does not feel pressure to perform from his contract. Actually, kind of the opposite. Now that it is settled and is so long, he can just go out and play.

> When told Safeco Field has a reputation for suppressing hitters, Cano mentioned Griffey and Alex Rodriguez, then said, “Not everyone is the same.”

> Zduriencik said this move leaves Brad Miller and Nick Franklin, who, both from Florida, have been friends for years, to battle for the starting shortstop spot. He also said the Mariners are still in pursuit of a right-handed bat, plus more pitching.


Leave a comment Comments → 20
  1. Quinault says:

    Didn’t we pick up a RH bat in Corey Hart? Hmmmmmm. Or maybe he was hinting around the Guti rumor? Hmmmmmmm.

    Please, please – let it be Iwakuma’s former teammate!

  2. Quinault says:

    As for catching depth, we still have Montero – although he has been repositioned at 1B in Winter Ball. I would think that Ackley is our largest trade chip at this point, but I would have him penciled in our outfield at this point (and the off-season is still young, so something may happen before spring training 60 days away).

    Since Chuck Armstrong is still with the team, you never know if Ichiro would come back into the fold. Chuck is sort of famous for his reunion strategy, as Willie Bloomquist this year attests to. Or Raul last year, or Mike Morse, Griffey, Carlos Guillen, Endy Chavez, etc. It sort of is funny as it was Chuck Armstrong that pretty much ran players out of town to begin with! If he wants to end his baseball career with redemption, they should hire Lou Pinella as team President. I think he had that job with the Yankees – back in the day. But then Tony LaRussa said that he would like to get back into the game with a team. He managed in the AL West and is not that far removed from baseball. We need baseball people! That is what I want for Christmas, Santa! (and pitching)

  3. Todd, any rumblings about what bullpen arms the team is targeting?

  4. Quinault says:

    I am up in the air in regards to either playing kids in the outfield, as the new guys platoon at DH / 1B [like we did in 2013], or picking up a PED user like Nelson Cruz.

    Once upon a time, I felt that we should have made a run at Raffy Palmero after his contract was up in Baltimore. Of course that was before he lied to Congress. But he owned Seattle!

    I tend to believe that one of the reasons that we did not sign Miguel Tejada was that he lied about his age.

    GMZ built this club with some trades and through the draft. Players have not advanced as quickly as hoped, and several in the pipeline previously are somewhat disappointing [Triunfel]. You can categorize Jason Bay last year as a free player and Bonderman as a feel good story. Both contributed at very little cost.

    Seriously I do not want to head into the season penciling in Hector Noesi into the starting pitching line up. But then, I do not want Joe Saunders (type players) either.

  5. If they don’t pick up a SP, the rotation (barring injury) will be Felix, Iwakuma, Walker, Paxton, and Ramirez.

  6. Quinault says:

    Remind me what’s up with Hultzen? Didn’t he have surgery this off season?

    We still have Blake Beavan and Brandon Maurer in the mix. I would put Yoervis Medina in more of the long relief category.

  7. Hultzen is out for the year after rotator cuff and labrum surgery.

    Beavan doesn’t have a third pitch that’s worth a damn. Maurer is intriguing and has good stuff, but he leaves the fastball in the middle of the plate and his changeup sucks.

  8. Quinault says:

    Wow, you just described Hector Noesi! Maurer jumped too high [from AA] last year and should still be in Tacoma, but I figure he might be in the bullpen.

    Thanks, I forgot the severity of the surgery on Hultzen. Darn, not an option.

    You got to think that another stop gap pitcher or a serious trade / purchase of a longer term arm has still has to be on the shopping list.

  9. Sounds like getting Tanaka will be very, very expensive if he is posted. I think they have to add a veteran starter, be it through trade or free agency. I’d probably go with Garza right now. Don’t have to give up a draft pick to get him. Though I guess the M’s would only lose their 2nd round pick if they signed someone the tender was offered to. Price would be awesome to add if they can somehow pull it off withut losing Walker.

  10. I still think they should go hard after Choo. They need an OF bad still. LoMo is awful defensively out there and scouts seem to be saying that Hart shouldn’t be out there either. Certainly can’t bank on it after 2 knee surgeries. They’re setting themselves up to have an awful OF defensively again like they did in 2013.

    They supposedly had the money for Kemp. Not that Choo is the player Kemp is when healthy. I’d do it if they can get him at 7 years for 126 mil.

  11. I wouldn’t give up Walker or Paxton at this point. Cost effective and under team control for 5-6 years.

    I don’t think Morrison will be a starter. I don’t have anything to base that on besides my gut, but I think the OF will be Ackley in LF, Saunders in CF, and Hart in RF.

    I would love to add Choo, but on a 5-year deal. That being said, the team is already too heavy with lefties and they struggled mightily against left handed starters last year.

    I think the M’s first rounder is protected this year because it’s in the top 10, but we lose or next highest pick for signing Cano. Granted, we will get another pick if someone signs Morales.

    I like the thought of adding Garza on a 3 year deal to be our #3 this season and ease the pressure on Walker and Paxton.

    Would still like to see the team add a bullpen arm. I thought Balfour would have been a good fit on a 2 year deal.

  12. Quinault says:

    If they are going to post Tanaka this year, I say put up the $20 million and go hard after this individual. We have something that he wants, a way to fit in! Iwakuma was his teammate in Japan! There is a huge Japanese population in the greater Seattle metro area. Jeepers, we even sell sushi at the stadium!

    We once had a HDTV deal with NHK and certainly have Japanese media in attendance.

    I could put up with kids in the field, if I know that we have pitching that will keep us in every game.

    And is it only me that sees LoMo as a DH platoon guy? As well as social media pr sort of experiment?

  13. I don’t know about Morrison being an experiment. He had the one big year, has battled injuries/inconsistency, and was in a bad situation in Miami. I think it is more indicative of how the team viewed Capps moving forward, since he definitely regressed last year. Throws hard, but no secondary pitches and his fastball was straight as an arrow.

  14. Quinault says:

    I am just saying that the old fogey front office may be trying to reach people in the twitterverse to excite folks about the new look Seattle Mariners. It is all about marketing. #HelloCano!

    I still think that it is a work in progress.

    And you are right about Capps, once they time the fast ball, it gets hit hard. But the boy throws some serious heat!

  15. Location trumps velocity.

  16. Yahoo has a short story up that the M’s are close to a 1 year with FG. If it’s fairly cheap, I’m totally in favor; if a miracle happens & he stays healthy, he can be a difference maker.

  17. oldtallguy says:

    What’s up with this worthless blog. I thought the paper hired a hotshot from KC. The last blog post was by Todd.

  18. At least the M’s are #1 at something!

    From Yahoo Sports:

    “The Worst (Signings)”

    1) Robinson Cano (10 years, $240 million with Seattle)

    As much as everyone in baseball seemed to like the Beltran signing, they hated this one even more.

    No one believes that Cano will be a productive enough player in the second half of his contract to justify this ludicrous signing.

    The Mariners are desperate for attention, and it’s a desperate deal.

  19. Quinault says:

    I would say that it is GMZ desperate to keep his job, as last year’s all in did NOTHING, and this year the hot seat is even hotter as rats have left the ship already. The simple fact that we may have drafted well and have turned over the roster to restock, but the youth have not shown enough and the trades have been problematic at best. We have gone through stopgap players, bargain bin reclamation projects and have recycled Mariners from the past with little to no success so far. I retract that: Raul had a pretty good half a season last year.

    I got to think that GMZ is still trying to build from within, but with players like Peguero and Triunfel in the pipeline he has to look elsewhere. Yeah, we overspent on Cano, but at least we spent something. It is so disheartening to come back from the Winter Meetings with a doggie bag year after year.

    One last Christmas wish: should Tanaka get posted, we should put in a bid. Given our terrible win/lose record we might even win the right to sign him! That might be the big splash that Chuck can go out on.

  20. Quinault says:

    If the big question is where would Tanaka “fit” in, the simple answer is Seattle, as we had Kenji Johjima, Shigatoshi Hasagawa, Ichiro Suzuki, Munenori Kawasaki, Kazuhiro Sasaki rotate through our MLB roster and we currently have Hisashi Iwakuma in the starting line up. Previously I have mentioned our relationship with NHK HDTV, so the folks in Japan have seen our games [even if the folks in the US Eastern time zone haven't]. The fact that we have a starting place in the starting line up should peak his interest as well. I mean his former [and hopefully future] teammate was in the Cy Young final balloting!

    We should ante up the posting fee and use our remaining cash to solidify our starting rotation. Tanaka could even sign autographs at Uwajimaya! Mt. Rainier is as close to Mt. Fuji that this continent has. And we are a sister city! As well as a contributor to the rebuilding efforts after the Tsunami. And we have played there.

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