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Series Preview: New York Yankees vs. Tampa Bay Rays (7/23-7/25)

Following their rain-shortened two-game series split against the Mets at home this past weekend, the Yankees head down South for three days to face the Rays in Tampa Bay.  Tropicana Field has, in a way, been a house of horrors for New York, having gone just 4-9 at The Trop since the beginning of 2017 including an ugly three-game sweep just a month ago. The Yankees will begin play today at 63-34, five full games behind the first place Red Sox.  Tampa Bay comes in at 50-49, 19 games out of first and 9.5 games back of Seattle for the second Wild Card position. With trade rumors swirling for both squads and the teams headed in opposite directions, this series provides a key opportunity for the Yankees to get back on track and put pressure on Boston to once again close up the AL East race.

Welcome Home Robinson Cano?

About a week ago or more Yankees YES Network broadcaster Michael Kay was discussing a trade that would have Robinson Cano landing back in the Bronx. He suggested that the Yankees and Mariners swap outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury for Cano. Crazy right? Not as much as you might think?

However, it would be highly unlikely that this proposal take place. The deal proposed by Michael Kay (I take no credit for this proposal) was said to include the Yankees getting Cano back in their lineup, Jacoby joins the Mariners and the Mariners would pay the final two years of Cano’s enormous contract. If you’re a Yankee fan, that probably sounds really good. Imagine having Cano right in the middle of the line up with Alex Rodriguez, Mark Teixeira, and Brian McCann. Of course the contracts aren’t completely identical as Ellsbury’s contract is a 7-year, $153 million deal and Cano’s is a 10-year $240 million deal. This deal makes even more sense than you think though.

If you think about the types of players these guys are, they both may be playing in the wrong ball parks. As a speedy guy, Jacoby Ellsbury would do really well hitting triples and doubles and getting himself in scoring position for his teammates. In the field, Ellsbury would be able to cover a lot of ground in the outfield of spacious Safeco Field. On the other hand, Cano’s power bat would be well served back in Yankee Stadium. Cano’s home run totals have been down because he has been playing in a bigger ball park, but if you put him back in Yankee stadium there would no doubt be an increase in his home run totals.

This trade to most people probably sounds ridiculous, but it would have great value to both teams. There are probably some Yankees fans out there who can’t stand Cano because of his lack of hustle or his lackadaisical play, but Yankee fans can’t deny one thing: the guy is talented. Robinson Cano back to the Yankees is certainly a pipe dream if even a thought at all, but putting Robbie Cano back in pinstripes would be a dream I feel most Yankee fans could not get enough of.

Article by: Joe’l Cruz
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