Just when it looked like Robinson Cano was ready to say goodbye to the Yankees and sign a massive long-term contract with the Mariners talks have broken down and Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News reports that “Cano’s chances of landing in Seattle have apparently ended on a sour note.”
According to Feinsand the contract talks “collapsed after Jay Z apparently overplayed his hand in a negotiating session with the Mariners” by asking for a 10-year, $252 million deal following “assurances” that Seattle would do $225 million over nine years. Mariners chief executive officer Howard Lincoln reportedly “exploded” after Jay Z upped the demands mid-meeting.
Cano’s father, Jose Cano, spoke publicly about the situation earlier Thursday, saying that “the Yankees don’t seem to want him” and adding to speculation that the second baseman was ready to leave New York. Yet if Feinsand’s sources are correct the Mariners are no longer an option for Cano, leaving the Yankees as “his lone suitor” despite a significantly lesser offer believed to be in the seven-year, $170 million range.
UPDATE: Cano to the Mariners might not be dead quite yet …
The Phillies and Red Sox appear intent on pursuing free agent first baseman Carlos Santana, MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports. Santana rejected a one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Indians on Thursday and is expected to draw widespread interest on the market this winter. The Mets, Mariners, Angels and Indians could make a play for the infielder, though no serious offers have been made this early in the offseason.
Santana, 31, is coming off of a seven-year track with the Indians. He batted .259/.363/.455 with 23 home runs and 3.0 fWAR last season, making 2017 the fourth-most valuable year of his career to date. Although he was primarily stationed at first base over the last year, he could step back into a hybrid first base/DH role with the Red Sox, who are hurting for infield depth with Hanley Ramirez still working his way back from shoulder surgery.
As for Santana’s other suitors, the Mariners are far less likely to pursue a deal after trading for Ryon Healy last Wednesday. Neither the Mets nor the Phillies have a DH spot to offer the veteran infielder, and the Phillies’ Rhys Hoskins appears to be blocking the way at first base. Then again, Santana may not find a more enticing offer outside of Cleveland, where Edwin Encarnacion might otherwise be the club’s best option at first base. During the GM meetings, Indians’ GM Mike Chernoff said he “love to have both [Santana and Jay Bruce] back” in 2018, but hasn’t backed up that love with any contract talks just yet.