Free agent second baseman Robinson Cano and the Yankees remain far apart in contract negotiations, as a report from Ken Davidoff in the New York Post has the coveted infielder asking New York for between $250-260 million.
In a meeting before Thanksgiving, Cano's representatives — including Jay Z and Brodie Van Wagenen — proposed a nine-year contract for the second baseman, though Davidoff reported the Yankees' latest offer was a seven-year deal between $160-175 million.
Cano has played all nine of his MLB seasons in New York, but the Yankees have other irons in the fire and won't necessarily wait for Cano to make a decision, per Davidoff:
If they spend their allotment before Cano decide on his future, Yankees officials have vowed to industry folks, they’ll give up on Cano (or get him to agree to a dramatically reduced contract) and come up with a cheaper solution for second base. They reached out early to free-agent second baseman Omar Infante and also checked in with Cincinnati regarding a trade for Brandon Phillips.
Though Cano and the Yankees are between $75-100 million apart in their negotiations, it is closer than the earlier rumors of Cano seeking in excess of $300 million for his big payday. A source told Davidoff that Cano hasn't sought $300 million since becoming a free agent after the World Series, and that those discussions occurred in May, during the season.
Cano on Thursday told Dominican newspaper El Dia, "I’ve never asked anybody for $300 million."
The 31-year-old second baseman hit .314/.383/.516 with 27 home runs and 41 doubles in 2013, his fifth straight season hitting at least .300 with a .500 slugging percentage, at least 40 doubles and at least 25 home runs. Cano has also been one of the most durable players in baseball, averaging 160 games per season for the last seven years. From 2007-13, Cano is one of just four players in MLB to play in 1,100 games, along with Prince Fielder, Adrian Gonzalez and Ichiro Suzuki.
The Yankees and Cano are expected to meet again on Monday, per Davidoff.