On a day when most Americans did not have to show up to work, Seattle Mariners‘ Robinson Cano did just the opposite. He had a fine day at the plate in Seattle’s 5-1 victory on Memorial Day 2014. Going 3-for-4 with two RBIs and a stolen base, Cano’s presence in the lineup is pivotal. Seven of his last ten games have produced multi-hit outings, where the Mariners are 5-5 in that stretch.
All these things are good, but not great. Cano again played another game without homering. For a team that is ranked tied for 21st in all of MLB in that department with only 38, a large reason the Mariners are lacking in this department is Cano. Whether his game has been transformed intentionally or by chance is up for debate. But a-one-home-run-per-month pace is nothing to be excited about, because if or when Cano struggles through slump or cold patch, the Mariners organization will certainly start to feel some heat.
It has been speculated that when in his prime, Ichiro Suzuki played with enough power to be a 20 home run guy every season. However, people believed Ichiro tailored his game/swing to that of a more left-handed gap hitter at Safeco Field. One cannot really argue with the results, as Ichiro became a regular visitor to 200 hits-per-season club.
Perhaps Cano is attempting to do the same and has his sights set on an American League batting crown, as opposed to being the all-around offensive threat he was during his time with the New York Yankees. One thing is certain — it will be interesting to see how the fans react if Cano continues not swinging for the fences and his batting average dips below .300.
The only way $24 million per season can truly be justified for a guy who hits less than 10 home runs in a season is if his team makes playoffs and individually he does something really special — like Ted Williams in 1941 special. Even still, Teddy Ballgame socked 37 HRs during that historical campaign in which he hit .406 and then proceeded to serve his country for three years in World War II so that the American people can have holidays like the one on this day.