- 2B, DH
- October 22, 1982
- 205 lbs
- Major League Debut:
- 5-03-2005 with NYA
- Allstar Selections:
- 2006 SS, 2010 GG, 2010 SS
Robinson José Canó Mercedes (Spanish pronunciation: [kaˈno]; born October 22, 1982, in San Pedro de Macorís, Dominican Republic) is a Dominican baseball player who currently plays as second baseman for the New York Yankees.
Family & early life
His father, José Canó, signed with the Houston Astros in 1980, and pitched in 6 games for the Astros in 1989. Robinson was named after baseball legend Jackie Robinson.
Canó grew up in the Dominican Republic though he lived in New Jersey for three years. He spent seventh, eighth and ninth grades in the Newark school system, attending Barringer High School for one year. When his family moved back to the Dominican Republic, Canó attended San Pedro Apostol High School in San Pedro de Macoris, where he played for the school's baseball and basketball teams. In the Dominican Winter Baseball League he plays for his hometown team Estrellas Orientales.
After graduating high school, Canó was signed by the Yankees in 2001 as an amateur free agent and began playing in their minor league system. He was viewed as a top prospect during his time in the minor leagues. He was one of five prospects offered to the Texas Rangers to complete the Yankees' acquisition of Alex Rodriguez in 2004. The Rangers selected Joaquín Árias instead. Canó was nearly traded two other times by the Yankees in its attempts to obtain Carlos Beltrán from the Kansas City Royals, which was never realized, and Randy Johnson from the Arizona Diamondbacks. Even though the later deal was made, Canó was not part of it because he was rejected by the Diamondbacks.
Cano was called up to the Major Leagues on May 3, 2005, while hitting .333 in 108 at bats in AAA, and took over second base from Tony Womack. Canó belted his first career grand slam this season as well. He finished second in American League Rookie of the Year balloting to Huston Street of the Oakland Athletics. Canó finished the year, however, with the third-worst walk percentage in the league, 3.0%.
During 2005, manager Joe Torre took some heat for comparing Canó to Hall of Famer Rod Carew. When pressed, Torre clarified that he only meant that Canó "reminded" him of Carew, in terms of his build, presence at the plate, and smoothness in his swing. Torre assured the media that he did not necessarily expect Canó to become as great a player as Carew.
In 2006, Canó led the AL All-Star balloting at second base, but could not play after being placed on the disabled list for a strained hamstring. After his return from injury, however, on August 8, 2006, Canó led the league in batting average, doubles, and runs batted in. During late September 2006 Canó accumulated enough at-bats to once again qualify for the AL batting race. Canó was rewarded the AL Player of the Month award for September.
Canó finished 2006 with the third best batting average in the AL (.342, just 2 points behind teammate shortstop Derek Jeter and five points behind Minnesota Twins catcher Joe Mauer), and 9th in the league in doubles (41). He also led the AL in batting average on the road (.364; 96/264) and after the 6th inning (.353; 55/156). He had the third-worst walk percentage in the league at 3.6%.
Canó finished 22nd in American League MVP voting with 3 votes. Derek Jeter finished second.
Canó gave up his number 22 to Roger Clemens, choosing to wear the number 24, a reversal of Jackie Robinson's number 42, in tribute to him. After a slow start to the 2007 season which saw him hit a meager .249 through May 29, Canó found his stroke batting .385 in the month of July with 6 HR and 24 RBI to raise his season average to .300 by the end of the month. He finished 2007 sixth in the league in games played (160), ninth in triples (7), and tenth in hits (189), doubles (41), and at bats (670). He was the only batter in the top 10 in doubles in the AL in both 2006 and 2007.
On January 24, 2008, Canó signed a contract extension for up to six years and $55 million. In the new deal, Canó will make $28 million over the next four years in the 2008 through 2011 seasons. The deal also includes options for the Yankees for the 2012 and 2013 seasons, during which Canó could earn an additional $27 million If the Yankees decline his contract option for the 2011 season, he will receive an additional $2 million.
Canó struggled early in the 2008 season, hitting .151 in April with just 7 RBIs. He improved later in the year, hitting .300 from May through August.
Notably, in Yankee Stadium's final season, Canó recorded the final walk off game winning hit in Yankee Stadium history by singling in the winning run in the bottom of the 9th inning in the Yankees 1–0 victory over the Orioles on September 20, 2008. In the final game at Yankee Stadium the next night (September 21, 2008), Canó recorded the final RBI in Stadium history with his sacrifice fly in the 7th inning, scoring Brett Gardner with the Stadium's final run. Canó missed only five games over the 2007 and 2008 seasons, and was one of only three Yankees to hit a home run while serving as a pinch hitter.
Canó hit .320 with 204 hits, 25 home runs and 85 RBIs. Canó ranked in the top ten among players in the American league in hits, extra base hits, total bases, at bats, doubles, batting average, runs scored, and triples. It was his first year hitting over 20 HRs. His 200th hit against the Boston Red Sox to clinch the AL East Division made him and Derek Jeter the first middle infield duo in MLB history to both have 200 hits in the same season.
His 204 hits ranked 3rd for hits during the 2009 season, and 1st among all second basemen. Canó also led second basemen in batting average. Canó also played in 161 games which was the most games played by a player during the 2009 season. He also hit a 3-run walk-off home run on August 28 against the White Sox. This was his first career walk-off home run. He also threw out Shane Victorino for the last out of the 2009 World Series. He was ranked 41st on the player rater at ESPN.com.
With the departure of Hideki Matsui, Canó was moved into the fifth spot in the batting order. For his early season performance, Canó was named the American League Player of the Month for April 2010. He was elected as the starting second baseman in the 2010 Major League Baseball All-Star Game and was selected to participate in the 2010 Home Run Derby; however, he withdrew due to a minor injury. He finished the season with a milestone 200 hits and 100+ RBIs (109).
Canó has performed ably in the middle of the lineup, replacing Matsui and Alex Rodriguez while Rodriguez was on the disabled list, as he has improved his batting with runners in scoring position.
Canó hit .343 with 4 home runs and 6 RBIs in the 2010 postseason. He finished the season with a .996 fielding percentage, the best for a second baseman in MLB, committing only 3 errors in 158 games. He turned 114 double plays and recorded 341 putouts. Canó won the American League Gold Glove Award for second basemen in 2010, the first by a Yankee second baseman since Bobby Richardson's five-year run from 1961–1965. Canó also won the American League Silver Slugger Award for second basemen with a batting average of .319, 29 home runs and 109 runs batted in.
- 2002 – South Atlantic League All-Star SS
- 2004 – NY Yankees Minor League Player of the Year
- 2005 – MLB All-Rookie All-Star 2B
- 2005 – This Year in Baseball Awards: Rookie of the Year
- 2006 – Selected to the 2006 American League All Star team
- 2007 – Had his Class A (Staten Island Yankees) uniform number (17) retired.
- 2010 – American League Player of the Month for April.
- 2010 – American League All-Star, starting Second Baseman
- 2010 – American League Gold Glove Award, Second Base
- 2010 – American League Silver Slugger Award, Second Base
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- ^ "Canó agrees to switch to No. 24 from No. 22". ESPN. January 23, 2007. http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=2740009.
- ^ Kepner, Tyler (January 26, 2008). "Yanks and Canó Agree on Deal". New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/01/26/sports/baseball/26yankees.html?_r=1&scp=2&sq=robinson+Canó&st=nyt&oref=slogin. Retrieved May 22, 2010.
- ^ Chuck, Bill. 100 random things about the Red Sox, Rays, and Yankees, The Boston Globe. Published April 2, 2009. Retrieved May 2, 2009.
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- ^ "Yanks beat Red Sox to win AL East – MLB News – FOX Sports on MSN". Msn.foxsports.com. 2009-09-27. http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/story/10130050/Yanks-beat-Red-Sox-to-win-AL-East. Retrieved 2010-07-08.
- ^ Amore, Dom (2010-04-05). "Red Sox–Yankees Notebook: Managers Trying To Make The Pieces Fit". Hartford Courant. http://articles.courant.com/2010-04-05/sports/hc-yankees-red-sox-notes-0405.artapr05_1_red-sox-yankees-notebook-mike-lowell-three-time-cy-young-winner. Retrieved 2011-03-02.
- ^ a b By Alden Gonzalez / MLB.com (2010-05-03). "Cano, Liriano AL's top player, pitcher for April | yankees.com: News". Newyork.yankees.mlb.com. http://newyork.yankees.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20100503&content_id=9766206&vkey=news_nyy&fext=.jsp&c_id=nyy. Retrieved 2010-07-08.
- ^ "Robinson Canó chosen for the home run derby | The Lohud Yankees Blog". Yankees.lhblogs.com. 2006-12-01. http://yankees.lhblogs.com/2010/07/06/robinson-cano-chosen-for-the-home-run-derby/. Retrieved 2010-07-08.
- ^ Shpigel, Ben (2010-07-07). "Canó Will Not Take Part in the Home Run Derby". New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/08/sports/baseball/08pins.html. Retrieved 2010-07-08.
- ^ Sherman, Joel (2010-08-23). "Canó cleaning up nicely for Yankees". NYPOST.com. http://www.nypost.com/p/sports/yankees/cano_cleaning_up_very_nicely_tKZGeSmvd2M34pQ8Ueg3aP. Retrieved 2010-08-23.
- ^ http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20101109&content_id=16041110&vkey=news_mlb&c_id=mlb
- ^ http://www.thebaseballcube.com/awards/Minor_League_Player_of_the_Year_by_Team.shtml
- ^ http://web.minorleaguebaseball.com/roster/page.jsp?ymd=20090730&content_id=6146468&vkey=roster_t586&fext=.jsp&sid=t586