Saturday, April 19, 2014


I am the coach to my son’s baseball team, and last week we had our league’s Opening Day. My son is 7 and in one years time, I've seen some great improvements in his playing ability. That's got other parents’ attention above anything else. We have a great squad of guys who can really play!  I love taking the time to teach any child the game of baseball and hope it translates throughout their playing days.

The night before Opening Day, I was outside playing catch and I told my son he was going to be our guy at Second base.  He was excited about the news, saying. “Dad, just like Robinson Cano.”  I looked at him, smiled, and said "Well, Robinson doesn’t play for the Yankees anymore. He plays for Seattle.”  He stopped throwing the ball and paused for a few seconds.  He shrugged his shoulders and said,  “I don’t care. I still like him. So what if he plays in Seattle, so do the Seahawks, and so did Ken Griffey Jr.”

We resumed play. That Ken Griffey part is me teaching him who some of my favorite baseball greats were. He quickly has even been turned onto ‘Junior' ever since. Nonetheless, my kid made a good point. You like a player, you can still follow him no matter where he ends up.

Sometimes I sit there watching a game and wondering how other players are doing around the league. If you think outside the box like I do, you will tune into other games besides Yankees sometimes. With that, I tend to look at the scores of Mariners games and particularly what our old buddy Robinson Cano has been up to.

I’m also aware many might not feel the same way. But the truth is, He was my favorite Yankee player for a while after Bernie Williams. I simply wish Cano the best in his new chapter in his baseball career. Right now,  In 16 games with the Mariners, he’s hitting .266, 8 RBIs and he finally hit his first jack as a Mariner this past week. The Mariners are in 4th place in the West. There is still a lot baseball to change that, and surely improve.

Cano is playing with a lineup nothing similar to the scoring machine that the Yankees were, but the team is showing heart and trying to win ball games.  Guys like their catcher Mike Zunino who already has 3 HRs for instance.  We’ve heard many say Cano has no protection in the line-up, and "it’s a bigger ballpark" at Safeco Field.  Many Yankee fans are hoping his numbers will diminish, but what if the numbers don’t? What if Cano’s presence makes the line-up somewhat better?

As I mentioned before in my Alfonso Soriano piece titled:  DON'T FEAR THE FONZ, “...once a team becomes a hitting machine, everyone does their part.” The same can be said here. They’re trying to pick each other up, and who knows if they go on a tear at some point during the season. It could happen, you know.

But getting back to Cano; It goes without saying players that get the monster contracts don’t play to their true potential.  We’ve seen this trend here... it’s happening in Anaheim right now with guys like Josh Hamilton and Albert Pujols.  Let’s just say, I believe Robbie doesn’t want to be a part of that trend.  He wants to be a guy that lives up to his hype and say “I came to Seattle to be a different result, and a better one.” I believe that.

Now, I know for some out there, Robinson Cano is now a player of Yankees past. That’s true. He’s a former Yankee now, let’s turn the page and look to who plays for the Yankees now! Right?  I heard it all and I get that.  But honestly, the fact that he went elsewhere sits in the back of your mind just alittle and enough to ponder how he's doing in his new home. Furthermore, you just can’t forget his 9 seasons with us!

And that’s not just with Robbie, but with any player. I will be the first to admit, I loved Cano in New York. Many did. I wanted him back this past off season, I really and truly believed he was coming back. Then, the news came that he chose to sign elsewhere and money was the factor.  It stung, I won’t lie.  But baseball is a business and we sometimes forget that.

When I said I wish Robbie all the best in his chapter of his baseball career, I truly meant that. I have moved on and with the way the Yankees are rolling lately, it's easy to put Cano out of my mind,  but I’m not going to be the one wishing ill will on the dude! Cano’s human and did what he felt what was best “FOR HIM.” With that, I’m not closing the door on what Robinson once was.  It’s like seeing you’re ex somewhere with his/her new fling. Somehow you can’t help but to look back, from the corner of your eye...just for a moment.

Rudy Laurens
BYB Writer
Facebook: House of Champions


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