You know the name. You remember the face. You also recall exactly why he hasn’t played a game at all in 2021. Cano was suspended this season after testing positive for PEDs last November. The second such suspension of his career, it cost him all of his 2021 salary and a lot of respect of the fans.
However, as Healey reports, members of the clubhouse continue to look up to Cano. It appears that he still has some sway within the ball club. His return in 2022 now sounds inevitable.
Maybe the Mets won’t release Robinson Cano outright after all
A dream scenario for many Mets fans since the Steve Cohen era began was the end of Cano in New York. His disappointing year in 2019 piled on to those already unhappy with the trade that brought him to Flushing. After rebounding in 2020, some thought differently.
Then came the suspension.
I’m not sure there are too many Mets players as universally disliked at Cano. I’m not going to use the word hate because it’s way too strong of a word. Cano is a cheater. He’s up there with the biggest cheaters in my life. My dad with my mom. My sister in Hungry Hungry Hippos. My dad with his mistress. My other sister with her first boyfriend. My dad with my mom, again. The list goes on.
There was never any guarantee Cano’s time with the Mets would come to an end even with a change in the front office and billions of Cohen’s dollars sitting there waiting to be spent. He’s going to pay Cano one way or another. Designating him for assignment is a move that may now, apparently, rub a few players the wrong way.
Think of next season as the Robinson Cano redemption tour
Just a few days ago, Ryan Braun retired from baseball. It wasn’t as big of a story as you might think because Braun hasn’t played all year long. In my opinion, a bigger baseball villain than Cano, the circumstances around his past PED suspension is much dirtier. He took down innocent people in the process. All Cano did was damage his own legacy and maybe a few pitcher’s ERAs.
There are certainly some Mets players who feel differently about Cano than the ones who reportedly continue to view him as a leader. Put any 26 men together in one group and you’re going to have a tough time not getting a hung jury on any opinion.
Next year can become Cano’s redemption tour. Back from baseball death, he can play his way back into favor with fans. It’s all anyone ever has to do to be forgiven for something non-criminal.
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Some Mets fans will never like Cano for what he means to the team. Others will hold the suspension against him on a more personal level. The more the Mets allow his salary to factor into their offseason decisions, the less forgiving fans will be. Winning cures all. The Mets won’t be able to do much more of it if Cano’s high salary prevents them from making the moves they need to do.