Mark Feinsand of the Daily News quotes a baseball insider as critical of the way Jay-Z and his team are trying to sell Robinson Cano in free agency:
“They’re selling him as Michael Jordan, not as a baseball player,” said a major-league official familiar with Cano’s situation. “As a guy that’s going to be a big rock star and bring all these fans in. Last year, that wasn’t the case.”
Maybe the source is just being catty. But if that is the pitch that Jay-Z has for Cano, it seems pretty misguided for a baseball player.
As the insider’s quote suggests, one player never makes the difference, on the field or in the ratings. Just ask the 2013 Yankees, who were basically the Cano Show by default. And baseball people know that by now. A pitch that hinges on Cano being paid differently than his teammates is one thing. If it has him being treated differently — if it has him committing to things beyond simply playing second base and knocking the cover off of baseballs every night — than suitors are going to be turned off, I suspect.