Apr 1, 2014; Anaheim, CA, USA; Seattle Mariners designated hitter Corey Hart (27) congratulates catcher John Buck (4) and second baseman Robinson Cano (22) after they scored in the third inning against the Los Angeles Angels at Angel Stadium of Anaheim. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
There is always a risk when you sign an expensive free agent, particularly in Major League Baseball where contracts can be long, guaranteed and very expensive. When you are the Seattle Mariners and your payroll is not necessarily at the top of the league, there is even more risk.
When Robinson Cano was signed to a 10-year, $240 million contract in the offseason, there were some mixed reactions. Plenty of people felt like the Mariners had paid over market value, and that expectations for such a contract could be ridiculously high.
So far, so good.
Through six games, Robinson Cano is hitting .391 with a .500 OBP. He hasn’t hit any home runs, but realistically he doesn’t have to provide major power for the Mariners. Cano needs to get on base, which he has done. This offense needs consistent base runners, not solo home runs.
Granted, it helps that Justin Smoak, Dustin Ackley and Abraham Almonte are all hitting over .275 for the season. In addition, the pitching has been very strong, particularly against the Los Angeles Angels.
In other words, Robinson Cano is not carrying this team on his back.
The point is that Cano is off to a good start, and that is good news for the Mariners. If Cano came out of the gate hitting .250 and everyone else was hitting .220, there were sure to be fears that nothing had changed.
Will Robinson Cano keep hitting close to .400 for the season? Probably not. Is this admittedly a small sample? Yes. However, this has been a good start and Robinson Cano is doing what he was supposed to do.