Robinson Cano & Darren O’Day

Robinson Cano and Darren O'Day don't have much in common. Cano, the son of a major leaguer, signed out of the Dominican Republic as a teenager and has developed into an All-Star and MVP candidate. You won't find O'Day on any MVP ballots and the side-arming right-hander has never been a top prospect. The Florida native wasn't even drafted and is far from a franchise player; two teams have already exposed him to waivers.

But the players do have something in common. Both were born 28 years ago today; Cano in San Pedro de Macoris and O'Day in Jacksonville. Their current clubs acquired them in different ways, but neither player joined his current organization with much fanfare. Cano signed a modest six-figure bonus in 2001, without the hype that surrounded international prospects like Michael Ynoa, Miguel Sano or Felix Heredia.

The Angels, who signed O'Day as a non-drafted free agent, lost him to the Mets in the 2008 Rule 5 draft. The Mets then exposed him to waivers and saw the Rangers claim him last April. It was easily one of the shrewdest claims of Jon Daniels' tenure as GM (the Alexi Ogando claim is another). O'Day has posted a 1.99 ERA with 7.6 K/9 and 2.2 BB/9 in 117.2 innings since joining the Rangers.

Neither move made headlines at the time, but both players are contributors as their respective teams try to advance to the World Series. Interestingly enough, Cano and O'Day have never faced each other. It seems unlikely that Ron Washington would bring the sidearmer in to face Cano, who bats left-handed, but as observers of the 2010 postseason will tell you, stranger things have happened. It'd be fitting if the two met for the first time tonight as they celebrate their 28th birthdays with the season at stake.

16 Responses to Robinson Cano & Darren O’Day Leave a Reply

  1. bert2170 5 years ago

    Some people forget that Cano was suppose to be a throw-in in the Randy Johnson deal, but Arizona didn’t want him.

    • $1529282 5 years ago

      He was also on the list of PTBNL candidates the Rangers could’ve selected in the A-Rod for Soriano trade… they went with Joaquin Arias instead. Oops.

    • redsandyanksfan 5 years ago

      Or most notably when the Rangers choose Joaquin (sp) Arias over Cano to complete the Soriano-A-rod trade, i bet texas wishes that they had Cano even with Kinsler come up in there farm system at the time they could found a spot for Kinsler if Cano stayed at second

  2. InTheKZone 5 years ago

    Two great players for their respective organizations.

  3. Robinson Cano for Darren O’Day. You heard it on first.

  4. AceGunderson 5 years ago

    I guess they could face each other. Cano hits righties better, but it’s not like he’s necessarily bad against lefties. If it’s not a tight situation, I could see O’Day facing him as part of an inning, just not brought in to specifically face him. All depends on who else is due up in the inning I suppose.

    I like O’Day a lot. I always love stories where it looks like a pitcher is gonna be mediocre at best, and then finds his groove with a different organization. Some guys just need a change of scenery/coaches/teammates, or perhaps just take a little longer to develop for whatever reason.

    As for Cano, I love what he brings to the Yankees, but I still feel like he’s only about 90% there. His physical skills are elite, and now that he’s seemingly putting his focus into it more consistently, it’s starting to show. I realize EVERY player has a development arch, but Cano just seemed a little extra immature as a player in his first few years IMO…not a moral judgment, just an observation from an outside observer. Maybe there’s even a hint of truth in the Melky-being-gone jokes…who knows?

    • YanksFanSince78 5 years ago

      I think Cano has the highest avg of lefty vs lefty in baseball. I also think he has the most hrs off a lefty as well this year.

      I don’t live in NY and haven’t for the past 10 years so I don’t read the NY papers except for Daily News every other day or so, but I can’t remember anyone accusing Melky of being a bad influence on Cano. Ppl have slammed him on being overrated but his personality and enthusiasm seemed to be one things about him that most loved. And the fact that Melky is 3 years younger than Cano and came up to the majors at age 20 you would think that Cano would be the one that influenced the younger Melky than the other way around.

      Either way I’m gald the Yanks were reactionary and gave into all the idiots asking for him to be traded after one bad year back in 2008. How many Kemp for Cano + Hughes proposals can a guy listen too?

      • AceGunderson 5 years ago

        Yeah, I don’t really think there’s much to the Melky thing. It’s just an ongoing joke because those 2 were notorious for enjoying the NYC nightlife together (and conversely, people whining that they weren’t focused on baseball enough). So, when Melky left and Cano exploded even more, the joke gained more traction. Personally, it just seems like Cano is hitting his prime, regardless of Melky’s presence. Like I said…more of a joke than anything.

      • I don’t care how bad he was, but during those trade proposals(I heard thousands of them)I was thinking that if they ever traded Cano I would probably think about denouncing my Yanks fanship for a year(this happened during ’08 of course).

        • YanksFanSince78 5 years ago

          It’s funny. I’m not going to place a call into Sharpton or anything but it seems like Latin ballplayers really get a bad rap sometimes. It just seems real easy to mistake a slump or lack of energy into lazy or “doesn’t play the game the right way”. I’m sure that the fact Cano has had 7 days off in the last 4 years may have exhasusted him here and there.

    • Do you watch baseball? Nobody hits lefties like Cano. Putz

      • AceGunderson 5 years ago

        Huh? Really? Did ya read my post at all?

        For the humans reading this…I apologize if I was unclear in my earlier post. The fact that Cano is good against lefties was exactly my point. As for the others, well, that’s what makes me hesitate to even bother putting some time into meaningful discussion online.

  5. vtadave 5 years ago

    More strong work from Omar there…

    $36 million for K-Rod
    losing O’day for nothing
    trading Heath Bell for Ben “Not THAT Ben Johnson” Johnson

    I love this quote from Omar on the Bell deal:

    “It may not be a sexy trade,” Minaya said in Florida. “You have to remember, the little ones are what count sometimes. Those are the ones.”

    Yes, yes they do.

  6. Backup_Slider 5 years ago

    (singing) O’Day! O’Day, O’Day, O’Day! O’Day! O’Day! O’Day, O’Day, O’Day! O’Day! O’Day! O’Day, O’Day, O’Day! O’Day! O’Day! …

  7. icedrake523 5 years ago

    IIRC, O’Day was put on waivers by the Mets so they could bring up the perennial whiner Nelson Figueroa.

    Fun fact: When O’Day got to the Rangers, they were in Toronto and they needed to use him that night. There was no jersey for him so he wore Kason Gabbard’s.

  8. tommyworld 5 years ago

    That was probably one of the most amusing debuts with a new team a guy has had. O’Day arrives at the park after the game had already started and wears the Gabbard jersey. He actually gets called in to pitch with the bases loaded and meets his teammates (the infielders at least) when he gets to the mound. Even though the situation was tense, the players and Wash were all laughing on the mound as O’Day introduced himself.

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