If it wasn’t for the MLB lockout, maybe Robinson Cano is still with the New York Mets right now. In reducing their roster from 28 to 26, the team decided to demote Yoan Lopez (expected) and designate Robinson Cano for assignment (not fully expected, but wished for).
What does the MLB lockout have to do with it and why should we be thanking the grief it provided us all winter long?
If not for the rule change which allowed teams to carry 28 men into Opening Day, there wouldn’t have been as much of an urgency to end the Cano tenure.
The Mets can thank the MLB lockout for another transaction
Mets fans can thank the lockout for more than just Cano leaving. The rush to do something big before transactions were put on hold at the end of last November helped lead them to signing Max Scherzer along with a few other players. Imagine if there wasn’t such a rush to get something done. Scherzer would have waited on other offers. The Mets may have found someone else.
No rule was manipulated. Nothing was taken advantage of. Instead, the Mets played right into the trap the baseball gods set for them to seemingly make the smartest and best decisions. From adding Scherzer in the first place down to giving Cano less than a month to prove himself, this ball club is shining.
Cano’s time with the Mets ends with a .269/.315/.450 slash line and only 24 home runs in 648 trips to the plate. He was batting .195/.233/.268 this season in his first 43 plate appearances. Buck Showalter gave him ample opportunities to start at second base and in the DH role. Looking at the bigger picture, it was clear the team needed to move on.
The Mets are now on the hook to pay Cano $37.5 million unless he signs with another team in which case they can save themselves $700K. In Steve Cohen’s world, it’s lunch.