The New York Yankees are like a car accident. You can’t help but stare in disbelief as you try to figure out exactly what has happened; when exactly did things start to go awry?
While Alex Rodriguez became the immediate scapegoat for a failing Yankees postseason, Robinson Cano has flown relatively under the radar though he hasn’t been producing much offense himself. But now between Derek Jeter being out for the remainder of the season due to a fractured ankle, and Rodriguez being benched again, the spotlight is most certainly on Robbie.
Cano has been nothing but a consistent weapon since joining the Yankees, and this regular season was no different. His .313 batting average, 94 RBIs, and career high 33 home runs helped the Yankees reach the postseason amid injuries and a bit of a rough patch down the stretch. In fact, while the Yankees as a team were struggling, and battling for first place with the Baltimore Orioles is when Robbie was his hottest. The last two weeks of the season he was hitting .458 with 16 RBIS.
So what happened?
In the American League Division Series against the Orioles, Cano had just two hits in 22 at bats. Granted those hits also brought in four runs, so why he was able to escape that round without being the biggest story of disappointment makes sense.
Now in the American League Champion Series, Cano finally got his first, and only hit of this series, during his fourth at bat, in tonight’s loss. A two out single in the 9th inning. I guess it’s better than nothing.
I used to think it was nonsense when I saw the commercial that said “legends are born in October,” but it’s true. You could hit 1.000 during the last two weeks of the season, but if you don’t bring that with you to the postseason, what good are you really?
Cano has all the potential to be the leader of this team for years to come, but if he can’t deliver when it matters most, then all his regular season success will be overshadowed by his postseason failure, leaving the need for someone else to step up to the plate. Figuratively and literally.