<
>

Cano, McCann & the eyes of Texas

11/21/2013

What would you think if:

1. Your original list of Robinson Cano's potential suitors had the Texas Rangers on top of the charts.

2. The Rangers just traded their second baseman, Ian Kinsler, for Prince Fielder in the biggest blockbuster of the offseason.

Wouldn't you think this further raises the possibility that the Rangers could become players for Cano? Our colleague, Dave Schoenfield, certainly does:

I've been saying all along that I believed the Texas Rangers were the sleeper team in the Robinson Cano sweepstakes; swapping Ian Kinsler for Prince Fielder is a move that helps increase the likelihood of that happening.

Yes, the immediate reaction is that this merely opens the door to play Jurickson Profar at second base; but I think Rangers CEO Ray Davis and general manager Jon Daniels have something even bigger in mind.

At the least, he Rangers could provide Jay Z/Creative Artists Agency the leverage to at least raise the Yankees' bid a little, if not just outright steal him from the Bronx.

You'd have to think everyone in baseball likes Cano as a player. But not everyone in baseball has called the Yankees in the past asking to trade for him. Awhile back, we reported that this conversation between Texas and the Yankees took place and the Bombers quickly said they were uninterested in a deal. Still, what does that tell you? It tells you the Rangers thought that if they were to deal for Cano, they would have the dough to sign him. The Rangers -- thanks to a new cable deal -- have tons of money.

Meanwhile, the Rangers, just like the Yankees, are in heavy on Brian McCann. The catcher may end up getting six years and $100 million because two of the biggest spenders on the market -- the Yankees and the Rangers -- both want him.

B.B. Abbott, McCann's agent, told ESPN New York a "handful" of teams want McCann. Everyone knows that handful includes the Yankees and the Rangers. McCann's ability to catch, play first base and DH are very appealing -- but especially to clubs in the AL.

Meanwhile, McCann and his wife are both from Atlanta, and it is all they have known. They have two young children. They may want to stay in the South.

So the Yankees' grand plans of keeping Cano and signing McCann could be thwarted by Texas. Oh, and the Rangers are in on Carlos Beltran and maybe even Masahiro Tanaka.

The Rangers' deal shows how motivated Texas is this winter. The Rangers have the money to match the Yankees. At the very least, they will drive up the prices. At the very worst, they will take the players the Yankees really want.