The New York Yankees lost their best player on Friday in Robinson Cano, who signed a 10-year, $240 million contract with the Seattle Mariners. Cano finally got the big deal he was looking for, and now the Yankees need to find a second baseman to replace him.
Before repelling down a building Friday morning, Yankees general manager Brian Cashman told the New York media that “anyone can be replaced, but some are harder to replace than others.” Obviously the Yankees are going to have a tough time replacing Cano, a career .300 hitter. A guy that’s hit at least 25 home runs in each of the past six seasons, and a guy that’s driven in at least 100 runs in three of the last five seasons.
Not to mention, it’s tough to find a player at any position that it as durable as Cano, who’s played in at least 159 games in each of the past seven seasons.
The leading candidate, at the moment, to replace the all-star, Gold Glove and Silver Slugger winning second baseman would be former Detroit Tigers and Miami Marlins second baseman Omar Infante.
Many around the game have suggested that Infante is the Yankees’ Plan B if they couldn’t re-sign Cano. He would suit the Yankees well for a couple of reasons. He hit .318 for the Tigers last season, while popping 10 home runs in the spacious Comerica Park and driving in 51 RBI. Sure, those aren’t Cano-type numbers, but that would still be decent production for the Yankees.
Defensively, Infante is nothing special, in fact, he’s nothing compared to Cano in the field, but the Yankees would be able to use him at second base and third base if you-know-who is suspended for most or all of the 2014 season. Third base is still one of the Yankees’ needs, and after signing Kelly Johnson to a one-year, $3 million dollar deal last week, the Yanks could use Infante at third base most of the time with Johnson at second base.
The Yankees have been talking with Infante all winter, and it was reported last week by Jon Morosi of FOX Sports that the Yanks made an offer to Infante, so it’s possible that we could see a deal get done with him this week during the Winter Meetings.
Keep in mind, the Yankees aren’t the only team that will be bidding for the services of Infante. One MLB insider mentioned that the Kansas City Royals will be big competitors of the Yankees for Infante after losing out on Carlos Beltran, who the Bombers signed to a three-year, $45 million contract last week.
Follow @GavinEwbank2013 on Twitter for more Yanks coverage.