Canó with the Mariners in 2014
|Seattle Mariners – No. 22|
October 22, 1982 |
San Pedro de Macorís, Dominican Republic
|May 3, 2005, for the New York Yankees|
(through May 4, 2017)
|Runs batted in||1,107|
|Career highlights and awards|
Robinson José Canó Mercedes (Spanish pronunciation: [ka no']; born October 22, 1982), often shortened to Robbie Cano, is a Dominican-American professional baseball second baseman for the Seattle Mariners of Major League Baseball. He made his MLB debut with the New York Yankees in 2005 and played for them through 2013.
Canó is a seven-time All-Star (2006, 2010–2014, 2016) and five-time Silver Slugger Award winner (2006, 2010–2013). He won two Gold Glove Awards (2010, 2012) and has been named American League Player of the Month twice (September 2006, April 2010). In 2011, Canó won the Home Run Derby. He was a member of the Yankees' 2009 World Series championship team over the Philadelphia Phillies and also the Dominican Republic's 2013 World Baseball Classic championship team, for which he won the tournament's most valuable player award. His team's win made him and fellow WBC teammates Octavio Dotel and Santiago Casilla three of the four players to have won both a World Series and World Baseball Classic, joining Daisuke Matsuzaka and later joined by Koji Uehara and Munenori Kawasaki.
His father, José Canó, signed with the New York Yankees as an amateur free agent in 1980 and pitched in the Yankees' and Atlanta Braves minor league systems before making his Major League debut and pitching six games for the Houston Astros in 1989. Robinson was named after baseball legend Jackie Robinson.
Canó was born in San Pedro de Macorís, Dominican Republic, and 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 Macorís, where he played for the school's baseball and basketball teams. In the Dominican Winter Baseball League he plays for his hometown team, the Estrellas Orientales.
After graduating from high school, Canó was signed by the Yankees in 2001 as an amateur free agent, receiving a signing bonus of over $100,000. He began playing in their minor league system that season, debuting with the Gulf Coast Yankees of the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League and the Staten Island Yankees of the Class-A Short Season New York–Penn League. Canó played for Staten Island and the Greensboro Bats of the Class-A South Atlantic League in 2002. Canó played for the Tampa Yankees of the Class-A Advanced Florida State League and Trenton Thunder of the Class-AA Eastern League in 2003, by which point he was viewed as a top prospect. Canó appeared in the 2003 All-Star Futures Game.
Canó began the 2004 season with Trenton, receiving a promotion to the Columbus Clippers of the Class-AAA International League. When the Kansas City Royals began to seek trade offers for Carlos Beltrán, the Yankees moved Canó to third base in an effort to showcase Canó for the Royals. The next month, the Yankees attempted to trade him to the Arizona Diamondbacks as part of a package to acquire Randy Johnson. He began the 2005 season with Columbus.
Canó was called up to the Major Leagues on May 3, 2005, while hitting .330 in 108 at bats with Columbus, 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 compared Canó to Hall of Famer Rod Carew. Torre clarified that he meant that Canó "reminded" him of Carew, in terms of his build, presence at the plate, and smoothness in his swing.
In 2006, Canó led the American League (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 received three votes for AL MVP.
In 2007, 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 $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, worth $27 million.
Canó struggled early in the 2008 season, hitting only .151 in April with just 7 RBIs. He improved later in the year, hitting .300 from May through August.
Canó recorded the final walk-off 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 as a pinch hitter.
In 2009, 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 third for hits during the 2009 season, and first 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 his first career walk-off home run: a 3-run walk-off home run on August 28 against the White Sox. On November 4, Canó threw out Shane Victorino for the final out of the 2009 World Series.
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 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 to 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. In addition, he finished third in the voting for American League MVP.
Canó had a rough first half to his defensive season. By July, he had committed twice as many errors as he had in his entire Gold Glove-winning 2010 season, in which he had three.
Canó was selected for the 2010 Major League Baseball All-Star Game as a starting second baseman, and was chosen to participate in the 2011 Major League Baseball Home Run Derby. With his father pitching, Canó won the derby, setting a record for home runs in the final round with 12 home runs despite having an additional four outs remaining.
Facing the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim on August 10, Canó fell a single short of hitting for the cycle. It marked the second time in his career that he missed the cycle by a single (the first being in 2005). Canó finished the 2011 season had 188 hits and a career high in RBIs with 118.
In Game 1 of the 2011 American League Division Series, Canó hit a grand slam in the bottom of the 6th inning to put the Yankees up 8–1. It marked his fourth grand slam of the year, including the regular season. He sandwiched the home run between two run-scoring doubles, giving him 6 total RBI for the game. The Yankees would eventually lose the division series in a 5-game span.
While Canó hit only one home run in April, he recovered to hit 7 homers in May, and a career-high 11 home runs in June. He returned to compete in the 2012 Major League Baseball Home Run Derby but was not able to repeat the previous year's victory. Instead, he hit zero home runs and finished in last place, and was booed by the Kansas City fans for not having chosen the Royals' Billy Butler to participate in the competition after previously stating that he would choose a Royal. He became the 9th player to fail to hit a HR in the Derby, and first since Brandon Inge did in 2009.
On July 20, 2012, Canó extended his career-high hitting streak to 23 games with a single off of Oakland Athletics pitcher Tommy Milone in a 3–2 Yankees loss. And, in the last 10 games of the season, he went on a ferocious tear, going 24 for 39 for an .615 average with 3 home runs, 7 doubles and 14 RBI. Canó finished the 2012 season with a .313 batting average, 48 doubles, 33 home runs, and 94 RBI.
Canó performed poorly during the postseason. Over his first eight games in the 2012 ALDS and ALCS, he batted .083 (3-for-36), including a stretch from October 9–16 when he was hitless after 29 at-bats, the longest hitless streak for any single year of the postseason play in MLB history. In the Game 4 finale, when the Tigers' sweep of the Yankees was complete, again Canó went 0–4, and his 2012 postseason average dropped to .075 (3-for-40).
On October 29, the Yankees exercised Canó's club option for 2013 for $15 million, keeping him away from free agency for another year.
On April 13, 2013, Canó made his first career appearance at shortstop. He began the first half of the 2013 season with a .302 batting average, 21 home runs, and 65 RBI. He was named the American League captain for the 2013 home run derby. During his only plate appearance of the 2013 All-Star Game, he was hit by a pitch thrown by Matt Harvey and suffered a right quad contusion. Cano left the game and was replaced by Dustin Pedroia. He only played for two pitches.
During the 2013 season, Canó batted .314 with 190 hits, 27 home runs, and 107 RBI in 160 games played.
In December 2013, Canó signed a 10-year, $240 million contract with the Seattle Mariners. Cano was offered a 7-year, $175 million contract to return to the Yankees, but turned it down in search of a longer deal.
Canó made his debut for the Mariners on March 31, going 2–4 with a double. Canó recorded his first RBI for the Mariners on April 2. On July 6, Canó was named the American League starting second baseman for the 2014 Major League Baseball All-Star Game. This marked Canó's 6th career All Star selection, and his 5th consecutive. Canó finished the season with a .314 batting average with 14 HR and 82 RBI. During August, he began to suffer from gastrointestinal symptoms that were later diagnosed as resulting from an intestinal parasite.
After the season, Canó traveled to Japan to join a team of MLB All-Stars playing against All-Stars of Nippon Professional Baseball in the 2014 Major League Baseball Japan All-Star Series. He fractured a toe during the series, requiring 3–4 weeks to heal.
Canó suffered through acid reflux during the 2015 season, which resulted from the treatment of the parasite. He was not named to the 2015 All-Star Game roster, ending a streak of five consecutive years as an All-Star. He hit .287 with 21 home runs, 34 doubles, and 79 RBIs in 156 games during the 2015 season, but improved in the second half of the season, batting .330. After the 2015 season, Cano had surgery to repair a sports hernia.
On May 7, 2016, Canó hit his 250th career home run, joining Joe Gordon, Alfonso Soriano, and Jeff Kent as only second basemen to reach 250 career home runs within the first 12 years of his career. He was selected to his seventh All-Star Game, played at Petco Park in San Diego. On August 28, Canó reached 30 home runs for the second time in his career, hitting it against the Chicago White Sox. In 161 games, Canó finished the season with a .298 batting average, 195 hits, 33 doubles, 39 home runs, and 103 RBI.
On May 16, Cano was placed on the 10-day disabled list due to a right quad strain. It was only the second time that Cano went on the disabled list in his career, and the transaction was actually retroactive May 13.
In the 2013 edition, Canó batted 15-for-32 (.469). The Dominican Republic defeated Puerto Rico 3–0 in the finals to win the championship and became the first undefeated team in the tournament's history. Canó was named the Most Valuable Player of the Classic. He joined teammates Octavio Dotel and Santiago Casilla as part of the four players to ever have won a World Series and World Baseball Classic, after Daisuke Matsuzaka completed the feat. The four were later joined by a fifth, Koji Uehara.
In 2017, Canó was named the captain of the Dominican Republic team. After going 3-0 in the first round, the Dominican Republic lost its first game to Puerto Rico which ended their streak of 11 straight wins dating back to the 2013 World Baseball Classic. The team failed to advance to the championship round and Canó finished 6-for-20 (.300) with a homerun and 3 RBI.
|American League champion||1||2009|
|World Baseball Classic champion||1||2013|||
|World Series champion||1||2009|
Canó is noted for his charity work. Hackensack University Medical Center (in New Jersey) named a pediatric rehabilitation ward after him. Cano has a son, also named Robinson, who lives with his mother in the Dominican Republic.
On November 13, 2012, Canó became a naturalized United States citizen.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Robinson Canó.|
|Awards and achievements|
|American League Player of the Month
|American League Rookie of the Month
|World Baseball Classic MVP