Kevin Long, the hitting coach for Cano’s old team, the New York Yankees, publicly criticized the second baseman, calling Cano out for not hustling on routine grounders. Reportedly, teammates such as Derek Jeter, as well as Long, had spoken with Cano about his lackadaisical approach to running to first. Cano would counter with his desire to be on the field every day and not risk injury.
Cano’s new team, the Seattle Mariners, has a new manager in Lloyd McClendon that was very quick to jump to the defense of his superstar player. Jerry Crasnick of ESPN reports that the rebuttal was strongly worded.
McClendon on Long: "I wonder if he had any problems with Robbie when he wrote that book proclaiming himself the guru of hitting.''
— Jerry Crasnick (@jcrasnick) February 18, 2014
McClendon went on to say that he was surprised and ‘a little pissed off’ at the comments made by the hitting coach. It will be up to McClendon to get the best out of Cano, who signed a high-pressure 10-year, $240 million contract with the Mariners in the off season. The Mariners’ skipper has a simple request of Cano. “I just need Robinson to be Robinson.”