I suspected as much yesterday, but it’s being widely reported now that Robbie Cano was ordered out of the Home Run Derby by Yankees brass. Which is fine. If I was Brian Cashman I don’t think I’d want Cano risking injury and risking some mechanical disruption as a result of swinging for the fences all for the greater glory of ESPN.
The only hiccup appears to be how it was all communicated. According to Jack Curry of YES, the Yankees had told Cano’s agent Bobby Barad that they were keeping Cano out. The Yankees told Barad that they’d gladly speak with Cano personally about it, but Barad said not to worry about, presumably because he would. Except Barad apparently didn’t tell Cano fast enough, because when reporters got to Cano before last night’s game, he was saying it was all news to him and that no one had spoken to him.
Not the greatest moment in the usually well-oiled Yankees machine, but it’s not like Cano is the type who’s going to go complaining about this sort of thing.
In other news, if Major League Baseball really wants a Home Run Derby, why don’t they just pick the top five guys on the home run leader board, whether they’re All-Stars or not?
Cubs infielder/outfielder Ben Zobrist has been placed on the 10-day disabled list with back soreness. The move is retroactive to April 14. While it doesn’t appear to be the precursor to any serious injury, Zobrist has already missed six straight days of activity after feeling his back tighten up last weekend. Should he see the minimum time on the DL, as expected, he’ll be eligible to return by the start of the Cubs’ series against the Indians on Tuesday.
Prior to his injury, the 36-year-old outfielder raked an impressive .326/.408/.465 with three extra-base hits in 49 plate appearances. He last appeared for the Cubs during their homestand last weekend and helped propel the team to a 14-10 win over the Braves with three hits, two walks and two RBI. Provided that he can remain healthy going forward, it’s a promising start for the veteran outfielder, who has yet to return to the All-Star-worthy numbers he posted with the club in 2016.
With Zobrist sidelined for the time being, Ian Happ and Albert Almora Jr. have shared the leadoff spot and center field duties over the last week. Happ went 0-for-8 with six strikeouts in two games before passing the baton to Almora, who collected five hits and two RBI in 11 at-bats.