Gary Sheffield played 22 seasons of professional baseball for eight teams, so he has some credibility when he says playing for the Yankees can give a player something he can’t get anywhere else.
Sheffield, who was with the Yankees from 2004-2006, isn’t in favor of the 10-year, $240 million deal Robinson Cano signed with the Seattle Mariners. He said Wednesday on MLB Network that Cano overlooked the added bonuses of playing in New York.
“When you leave New York, you’re gonna feel it,” Sheffield said, according to the Daily News. “Just ask guys like Johnny Damon and all these guys that had names and went somewhere else. You didn’t hear anything about them. And I think that Cano is a good enough player that you’ll hear about him, but being in a lineup like that — he hasn’t tasted that kind of food yet.
“You’ve gotta be the first batter and the second batter all the way through the ninth batter, and when you have to go up there every day and face that, you start to realize that money ain’t everything.”
Sheffield, who played with Cano for two of his three years with the Yankees, isn’t the first former player to look at Cano’s situation that way. Pete Rose also cautioned about the fallout of playing for a team without much other talent.
The Yankees weren’t anywhere close to offering Cano the years or money he was looking for, but Sheffield said Cano’s agents should have found a way.
“I would’ve tried to bridge the gap,” Sheffield said. “I would’ve tried to do everything possible to make that [Yankees] contract work.”
Sheffield played for the Detroit Tigers and New York Mets to finish off his career after wrapping up his time with the Yankees in 2006, when he was 37 years old.
Sheffield photo via Twitter/@TheNoLookPass