Cano wants ten year megadeal

While fantasies of trading Alex Rodriguez elsewhere have dominated the collective mind in the wake of the Yankees’ disappointing exit from the playoffs, the biggest long term financial concern for Brian Cashman right now is the status of Robinson Cano. The Yankees’ best player has a $15 million option for 2013 that the team will undoubtedly pick up, but after that he’s eligible for free agency, and could be hitting the open market as a cream of the crop player at a time when more teams than ever are flush with cash. Ideally, the Yankees would work out an extension with Cano before it comes to that, but based on this report from Joel Sherman, they shouldn’t expect any early bird discounts fro their second baseman:

Whenever I have asked about his financial goals, Cano always has said he is not concentrating on that subject. Yet a few members of the team told me Cano has said he is expecting a 10-year contract at top-of-the-market dollars. In a conversation with me yesterday, Boras also did not give numbers, but it was clear he expects his client to be treated financially like one of the great players in the game.

In other words, he’ll be happy to sign with the Yankees now, but only for premium dollars. The idea that Cano would take a discount has always been something akin to wishful thinking, at least since he signed up with Scott Boras aheda of what’s likely to be his only crack at free agency. Simply put: Players don’t hire Boras if they want to leave money on the table. What this does mean, however, is that Cano almost certainly has no plans of foregoing free agency. He’s not likely to get a 10 year contract from anyone, but if that’s what he’s going to ask for if the Yankees open negotiations with him now, he’s essentially charging the Yankees a premium for keeping him off of the free agent market and out of the clutches of other franchises. I doubt the Yankees bite on that, in which case they’ll have to contend with all comers for Cano next season.

About Brien Jackson

Born in Southwestern Ohio and currently residing on the Chesapeake Bay, Brien is a former editor-in-chief of IIATMS who now spends most of his time sitting on his deck watching his tomatoes ripen and consuming far more MLB Network programming than is safe for one's health or sanity.

50 thoughts on “Cano wants ten year megadeal

  1. Love Cano's game, but this is exactly the kind of contract the Yankees should steer clear of in the future. The 10-year megadeal for a player in his 30's. He'll be near impossible to replace (Corban Joseph is a nice player at 2B in AAA for the Yanks), but overpaying shouldn't be an option.

  2. who else beside the Red Sox can afford a 10 yr 200 mil contract? Boras will get that money out of the Yanks or he'll get the Sox to do it. And you know that fear will motivate the Yanks to act. It happened with Bernie (not that it hurt them or anything) and will happen with Cano.

    Can you imagine Cano hitting cleanup for the Sox for 10 years?

  3. Cano, right now, is one of the top players in baseball. He's not going to be that when he's 41, though he might be an effective DH and back-up first baseman. He's entering the decline phase of his career. I suspect next year — when he's motivated to play for a contract — will be his best year or close to it, and it'll be all downhill thereafter (though I think the hill is high enough that he'll remain productive into his mid-30s, like Jeter and A-Rod). The only way I'd sign him for 10 years is if the last five are for Chavez dollars.

  4. The Dodgers still potentially have that kind of money, and by next years the Cubs might be in a position to pull the trigger. But yes, there aren't many teams with the muscle to drive up his price. Of course, as has been noted, it only takes one…

  5. Scott Bora can demand whatever he wants, but that doesn't mean it's going to happen. The Yankees are seeing what happens when you give a 10 year contract to anyone in their 30's, no matter how good they are now, when they approach the end of it. So, there's no way they'd make that mistake again (I hope). Who else has the financial resources? The Red Sox? Don't think so, especially considering the salary dump they did this summer, doubt they'd be interested. The Angels? Nope, they already made that mistake with Pujols. Cano will sign a five year deal, either here or elsewhere, but no longer.

  6. I think 7 years max with 22-25 mill a year is an ideal deal for the yankees since Cano is already 30.

  7. You would hope they learned their lesson with the Rodriguez deal. There is no way the Yanks should go more than 6 years and $150M for Cano. If he can get more than that elsewhere, God bless him and we move on. Might be worth looking into a megadeal with him as the centerpiece. Love him as a player, but at some point sanity has to rule the day.

  8. Pretty much what Bill (and others) said. Sure – he'll leave a hole. But we let Alfonso go – I'm pretty sure whatever team has him today wishes they didn't. Yankee management can wake up every day to Alex's contract – can they seriously even contemplate signing Cano into his 40s?

    Let him walk; once he hits the market, don't bid against yourself – as they did with A-Rod. Would love to see Detroit saddled with his contract 5 years from now.

      • Spending that kind of money, that kind of years – amounts to a bet, at least to me.

        If I had to bet, yes, I'd bet he'd be very mediocre at age 36.

        Terrible? Depends on your definition.
        Very average, slow, and likely DHing? With whatever team had him for the next 5 years looking to move him? That's how I'd bet.

  9. i'm some how not upset if he goes to the cubs. i feel like any good that can come to them even at the expense of the yankees is ok lol

  10. I'll feel more comfortable discussing Cano when the stench of his post-season performance wears off! But historically speaking, 2B don't age well. It's years 3-6 of a six year deal that worry me. I can't imagine years 7-10.

    • Sadly, I CAN imagine years 7-10.

      A platoon DH with an OBP of say, .284. Getting what? – $18 mil per year? Do you think there's any chance of him even having a positve WAR by then?

  11. Cano in the Detroit lineup is a scary thought – that'd be 3 of the AL's top 5 hitters on one team, with the best pitcher in the league alongside them. LA is also a realistic destination, as is Miami. Boston has the money, and Cano would love to play with Ortiz. Philly will be in on it as well, and Texas will be looking for someone to replace Hamilton after not making the post-season next season. There will be no shortage of teams interested and with enough money to make it happen. I think he will get 8 years at 23-25 million per year, and i don't know that the yanks will be willing to go there. It might make sense for them to do what Boston did – use Cano and Granderson to get someone to take Arod off their hands in a massive salary dump. Probably wouldn't happen until later in the season, when someone is really desperate to make a run at the WS.

  12. Cano getting a ten year deal would be one of the funniest things to happen in baseball. That is even worse than the Werth and Alfonso Soriano deals. It would be hilarious watching a 36 year old second basemen with reduced range sinking his team with five years left on his deal. I imagine it as taking Luis Castillo and Alfonso Soriano, putting them in a blender, then pouring that into a mold and naming it Robinson Cano.

    Anything more than five years is ridiculous, more than seven is pure insanity.

    • Except that Cano is far better than any of the players you mentioned. I get that Arod has poisoned everyone in NY to long term contracts for the time being, but Cano is 30, not 35. Of course he will not be the same player at the end of a 10 year deal, but that is true of anyone who signs a 10 year deal – it is a premium paid to a superstar, and Cano is most definitely a superstar. Fact is, the market for Cano will be much hotter than it was for Arod when the Yanks signed him, and while the Yanks clearly bid against themselves for Arod, there will be no shortage of competition to sign Cano.

      If you don't want to give out long term contracts, then you can forget about ever signing a superstar free agent.

      • If the Yankees wanted to give Cano a long contract, they should have done it in 2008 when he was young, his stock was lower, and he was expecting less money. Instead they gave him a 4 year deal. Bad move. He in absolutely no way deserves a ten year deal now. Again, if 10 year deal was something he wanted, he should have demanded it in 2008 when he was 25 as opposed to signing a 4 year contract extension. Anyone giving him 10 years would be insane.

    • Also, dothese 'megadeals' really work? There have been 12 such contracts that have continued far enough to judge, and 9 more current contracts. Of those that can be judged, 4 have been successful, most notably probably Jeter, and 8 have been failures (Helton, for instance). Of the 9 current contracts, a lot of them look like pretty bad deals. Mauer and Pujols, for instance. Fielder, Brau, and Kemp I wouldn't feel very comfortable about, either.

      It seems to me that these 8-10 year dals are almost a garaunteed failure with only a tiny number of exceptions.

  13. For a superstar, Cano doesn't walk as much as he should. His offensive value probably declines as his hands/wrists/bat speed decline, which, as everyone is stating here, will probably be fairly noticeable in the 33-36 range, and profoundly noticeable thereafter..

  14. Would it be so awful to trade him this off-season and gain a couple of young top talents? We all have heard the whole "Yankees are getting old", and it's true. A future consisting of Mason Williams, Michael Pineda and some other very talented young guys sounds fruitful. I know it would be tough to lose a number 4 hitter in the middle of an Alex Rodriguez decline, but giving him that contract would be horrific and losing him to free agency would be just as bad.

    • Getting rid of Cano means it will be a good few years before the Yankees compete again for a World Series. There is nobody in the system to replace him with, and no really attractive offensive free agents coming up. Take Cano out of this year's lineup and see what you're left with (hint: only 1 player with a batting average above 272, and he happens to be fresh out of the operating room). Remember, Cano is far and away the best hitter on the team, with nobody else even coming close to him.

  15. I understand that Cano is the best hitter on the team. You're acting like they wouldn't have money to spend on free agents and that the team isn't getting anything in return. When you trade a player like Cano, you get a great young player who is major league ready and other talented young players as well. A lineup of Jeter, Ichiro, Tex, A-Rod, Gardner, Martin, Granderson, and others wouldn't exactly be the worst in the league either…

    • Would they get a great major league ready young player for a guy with 1 year until free agency? I'm not so sure anybody would be willing to give up their Mike Trout or Bryce Harper type player for 1 year of Cano.

      In terms of free agents, who exactly would you like them to go out and sign? Because I don't see many attractive options this or next offseason.

      And regarding the lineup, Jeter is coming off surgery, Ichiro had a good two months to end the season but a terrible year and a half leading up to that, Teixeira is a 250 hitter, Arod is washed up to the point that he was a platoon player in the playoffs, Gardner is coming off a missed season, Martin will no longer be on the team, and Granderson batted 230 and struck out nearly 200 times this year – one great season does not make him a great player (is he really just Alfonso Soriano with more strikeouts?).

      Cano is the only sure bat in the lineup. I can't see them getting great young talent in return for a guy under contract for 1 year. The only reason to trade Cano would be if it gets Arod off their hands.

      • I'm not saying this is something that needs to be done, but if you don't at least look at the possibility you are crazy. His trade value is extremely high and it just doesn't seem like he will be kept past this season.

        What you're saying is that you'd rather have him be paid 15 million this season to sustain somewhat of a good lineup for only one year rather than gain prospects and be able to use that 15 million to add to the bank. With Swisher and Soriano out, you'd be saving 35 million on just those players alone.

        To not at least look at the option is kind of ridiculous.

  16. I just don't see Hal and Company giving out anymore 10 year deals no matter who it is. If Cano and Boras stick to their guns and don't waiver from 10 years/$200MM plus I'm definitely thinking he'll be playing for a new team in 2014. And I wish him luck there.

    If A-Rod's contract has taught us and the Yankees anything paying a player into his late 30's never mind his early 40's it's a huge mistake. If it's me I give him 5 years guaranteed with a 6th year vesting option and that's it.

    David Adams should be more then an adequate replacement for him come the 2014 season if need be and about $20MM plus per season cheaper.

  17. Shoot – I have no idea why everyone's so worked up…that Dickerson guy hit better than half our lineup did in Detroit.

    I know – apples and rotten kumkqats – but still…there's got to be someone else in the system who can freeze in October, come 2014.

  18. I really think this is an overreaction to how the arod deal turned out. Do you think cc will still be an ace when he is 37 years old at the end of his contract? No way, but he was too important to the team to let walk over those last few years in which he won't justify his $25 million salary. Same with Cano, who is the only real superstar left in the lineup. I'm not saying give him 10 years – nobody is going to give him 10 years – but i'd be fine with 7, even 8 years. These are the Yankees we're talking about, not the Devil Rays. The only reason this is even being discussed is because the Steinbrenners are determined to make that extra $50+ million in 2014 and beyond. Its not as if the team can't afford to resign any and all of their free agents, its just that they'd rather put the cash in the owners' pocket. And to me, it's a real shame that we as fans are so on board with this plan to pad Hank and Hal's bank account that we are shoving our best player out of town.

    • Allen, the $50MM that you are referring to isn't money for the most part the Yankees would have spent on the Yankees. That's money that the Yankees would be paying out in luxury tax and revenue sharing to MLB and other baseball teams owners. Who in their own right are very, very wealthy individuals. BTW, the Yankees really don't have to cut a lot to get under the luxury tax threshold for 2014 of $189MM. The way MLB calculates the luxury tax it's based on a teams/players AAV (average annual value). Which is completely different then a teams annual payroll. For example if the threshold was $189MM for 2013 the Yankees would probably only have to cut their payroll by about $25MM that's just about the amount of Swisher's and Soriano's salaries. And when they did that no longer would the Yankees be subsidizing teams like the Tigers, Phillies, Dodgers, Marlins, etc…So once again it's not that the Yankees would be putting the money in their pockets it's that they would be taking their money back out of the pockets of these very, very wealthy other team owners.

      • That $50 million will go to one of two places: either to Hal and Hank or to MLB. I don't care one bit about that $50 million. I care about the $25 million they won't pay Cano in order to pocket that money that I don't care about. Bottom line: they are spending less money on the team and putting more in their own pocket.

        • It's a really inefficient approach to business. While I'm not going to lose sleep over the Steinbrenner's inefficiencies, $50 million they spend in tax will likely only take away from future spending on product, and not from their own bottom line.

  19. If I'm the Yankees the thing that would concern me about Cano's performance this year isn't so much his lackluster ALDS and ALCS where he went 3 for 40 with just 4 RBI's and No HR's. It's his season splits when facing left hand pitchers. For the entire 2012 season here are his numbers when facing left handed pitchers and they are not very good, not good at all:
    AB's: 243 / BA: .239 / OBP: .309 / OPS: .646 / with only 12 extra base hits and 26 RBI's. Those numbers account for 39% of his 2012 stats. Just my opinion but those numbers do NOT justify a 10 year/ $200MM plus contract.

    • One season's sample vs LHP isn't saying much. He's a wRC+ 109 for his career vs. LHP (132 vs. RHP). Pretty typical split of a LHB. Nonetheless, I'm not for a deal longer than 4-5 years, as unlikely as that may be.

  20. i don't wanna see the yankees paying $23-25M per year for him to disappear in the playoffs. I prefer a 2B who really wants to win it all. Give him this kind of money for 10 years and see the disaster at october.

    Cano, Swisher and A-rod embarrassed the yankees. How can you ask for a 10 year contract after a post season collapse, which you don't hit AT ALL? Shame on him.

    • My friend you forgot to include perhaps the biggest embarrassment of the 2012 postseason. That was Curtis Granderson.

      • And they picked up his option, while implying they'll let Swish walk. In fact, Jason went so far as to call the signing a no-brainer.

        So – guess at least some of us know nothing.

        • My friend there is a difference between picking up a 1 year option for Granderson and signing Swisher to 4 maybe 5 years at somewhere near $50 to $75MM total if not more. I'd sooner have Granderson for 1 year and see if his "eyes" where part of the problem in 2012 then have to take Swisher for 4 or 5 more years of not showing up at crunch time in the playoffs. That's just my opinion.

          • Fair enough – signing, or not signing Swish, depends a LOT on what he ends up getting. No way is he worth Werth money. Not imho, anyway. But I'd take 4 or 5 years at $9-10 mil a year.

            As much as I'd like to – if we dumped everyone who didn't show up in the clutch, we wouldn't have much of a team. We might as well have someone on the team to at least GET us there. (not using caps to shout – but don't know how to italicize for emphasis here.)

            Picking up Grandy for a year isn't horrid – tho I think he is worth less than Swisher. (ouch – and if I follow that logic – IF Grandy is worth 15 mil, then Swish should be worth that or more…)

  21. I won't question his work ethic, but once his skills decline, he doesn't seem like the type of player who will be hustling to beat out hits or ranging well in the field. I think once those skills do degrade he will be out of the game in a competitive sense very quickly.

    His (incredible) regular season production can carry the Yankees to 93 win seasons, but he is a .222 career postseason hitter who does not walk much.

    He is an unbelievably skilled ballplayer who just doesn't have that Derek Jeter factor/mojo. What I wonder is that if he has a bad year when he is older (Jeter a la 2010-Spring 2011) can he bounce back? Does he have the competitive edge?

    Regardless, 10 years would be silly, whether or not ARod's contract is used as a measuring stick. I hope the guys with the $ agree.

    • I agree with you, he's not jeter. he has shown this postseason.

      I really don't care with you hit over .300 in regular season and just go 3-40 with .075 AVG in the playoffs. Regular season games don't win championships. Look at nationals, the best record in MLB, got out for the wild card team.

      • Nationals also had their best pitcher on the bench.

        None of you are addressing the fact that there is nobody either in the Yankees minor league system or in the free agent market (unless you'd rather give that long term contract to Josh Hamilton) who will be able to replace even half of Cano's production. You can knock his post-season production all you want, but without Cano the Yankees probably don't even make the playoffs.

          • It definitely warrants a 7-8 year deal.

            And frankly, unless the Yankees have a plan to replace his production, it does warrant a 10 year deal. You can't ignore the fact that he has been the best player on the team for a few years now, and there is no apparent option to replace his production. The current trend in baseball is to give stars huge long term deals – if it helps you sleep at night, just think of it as a short term deal for higher AAV with deferred money. If the Yankees want to field a competitive team, they have to be willing to dole out the cash alongside the other big market teams.

          • So if he gets a ten year deal, and has 5 very good years, and degrades over years 6-7, what happens at ages 38-40? Do you bench him and eat the money?

  22. I say let Cano play out his $15MM option year. Then at the end of the 2013 season if some other team owner wants to offer what will be a 31 year old Cano a 10 year $200MM plus deal that will have him playing 2nd base or DH'ing into his late 30's or early 40's so be it. Let's not lose sight of the fact that Cano is a lefty and come a couple of years from now if Cano signs with another team he will not have the benefit of the "short" right field porch of Yankee Stadium. Just my opinion.