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Wild rumor time: Robinson Cano might have met with the Tigers yesterday

Nov 23, 2013, 10:01 AM EDT

cano gray getty Getty Images

The Tigers were able to shed the monster contract of Prince Fielder earlier this week in the deal that netted them Ian Kinsler from the Rangers. Is it possible that the next step will be to pursue free agent second baseman Robinson Cano?

That scenario seems extremely unlikely for a variety of reasons, but there have been some rumblings that Cano was in Detroit yesterday. Tony Paul of the Detroit News did some pretty thorough checking on the matter and found nothing conclusive. But he also couldn’t rule it out.

There was, indeed, a charter plane that took off from Teterboro, N.J., about a half-hour outside New York City, at 6:59 a.m. Friday and landed at Willow Run 90 minutes later. The plane then sat at Willow Run until 2:04 p.m., when it headed back to Teterboro. The plane in question is a Kelso Air-owned business jet, a Bombardier Challenger 600, which seats between 14 and 18 passengers. This plane could cost as much as $4,100 per hour to charter, or more than $32,000 for this particular trip — impressive, to be sure, but not much of a dent for someone who made, say, $15 million in salary in 2013.

This jet also has made no other recent trips to Michigan. Its recent getaways include such locales as Augusta, Ga. (home of swanky Augusta National Golf Club); Bermuda; Sacramento, Calif.; San Diego; and Chicago.

There was no word from either airport on whether Cano had been on board. An employee in the administration office at Teterboro said even if he had that information, he couldn’t disclose it. There was no answer at Willow Run on Friday evening.

Now, how do we know Cano is even in the States right now, and not home in the Dominican Republic? Truth be told, we don’t. However, there’s a good chance he has remained in New York. He is, after all, searching for a new contract. And just the other day, he did attend an A-list party in New York City.

Cano’s hip-hop agent, meanwhile, is Jay Z, who was in Oklahoma City on Thursday night, sitting courtside for an NBA game. (He also represents Thunder star Kevin Durant.) There was no direct flight listed from Oklahoma City to Willow Run. But Jay Z also has his own private plane, and apparently has the ability to file a request with the FAA to be excluded from the publicly accessible flight-tracker websites.

I don’t think we have seen much plane tracking in the baseball world since Cliff Lee three years ago. The Hot Stove will make you do some crazy things sometimes.

As for the Tigers, they are staying pretty quiet on the matter. A team spokesman gave a “no comment” to Paul while Tigers general manager Dave Dombrowski told Chris Iott of MLive.com via email that “we plan on having Ian Kinsler as our second baseman this year.”

  1. phillysports1 - Nov 23, 2013 at 10:07 AM

    If tigers sign him, what’s the move for kinsler ?

    • Ben - Nov 23, 2013 at 10:17 AM

      First base. Cabrera goes to third.

      (Also, yussssss I love absurd rumors!)

    • stoutfiles - Nov 23, 2013 at 10:21 AM

      Kindler would be moved to LF. But that’s if they signed Cano, and they won’t.

    • aphillieated - Nov 23, 2013 at 10:27 AM

      Mamaguebo did u even read the whole thing? Tigers GM: “we plan on having Ian Kinsler as our second baseman this year.” They have Kinsler and he only plays 2B.

      • timmmah10 - Nov 23, 2013 at 10:39 AM

        You don’t have to read the article to know Kinsler has played 1B in the past….

        BUT, I would rather someone else at 3B and have Cabrera play 1B. It wouldn’t make much sense to move Fielder and leave Cabby at 3B. We wouldn’t be upgrading defense much.

      • 3yardsandacloud - Nov 23, 2013 at 1:11 PM

        Not only that, Kinsler could play LF. Regardless, I think Dombrowski prides himself on not lying. Therefore, it’s possible Cano moves to 1B/LF/3B. I would think 3B makes the most sense.

        I highly doubt Cabrera stays at the hot corner when they can get him back to first (defensive upgrade) and add a better player at 3B, which would be another defensive upgrade. It’s an interesting rumor and it would not surprise me at all. Illitch has unlimited funds and wants to win.

        Infante was leaving, Kinsler is necessary to replace him. The rest of the open positions could be handled a number of ways

      • asimonetti88 - Nov 23, 2013 at 1:59 PM

        Because GMs never say one thing then do another.

  2. henryjones20 - Nov 23, 2013 at 10:21 AM

    good lord I pray u guys never decide to follow me and report my whereabouts one weekend.lol

    • temporarilyexiled - Nov 23, 2013 at 10:43 AM

      Libel or boredom?

  3. aphillieated - Nov 23, 2013 at 10:29 AM

    You guys are stup*d if you think the Tigers are going to sign Cano. Tigers are probably not even thinking about it.

  4. phillysports1 - Nov 23, 2013 at 10:46 AM

    I asked ” if tigers sign him , what’s the move for kinsler ? ” … I know kinsler is there second baseman . It’s clearly stated in that article . Weirdo

    • aphillieated - Nov 23, 2013 at 10:59 AM

      Okay man, whatever you say.

  5. pisano - Nov 23, 2013 at 11:00 AM

    This might be another Jay-Z fueled rumor to get the Yankees off their number. I wish he’d sign somewhere else, the Yankees have a lot of holes to fill, and they may not be able to fill them all this off season,and the money saved on Cano, will go towards answering the spots that need to be addressed, so as Branch Rickey once said : We lost with him, and we can lose without him.

  6. hockeyfan28 - Nov 23, 2013 at 11:01 AM

    You take the money you just saved in the Fielder trade and you hand it to the guy who just won you the cy young and sure up the bullpen then you will finally win the World Series

    • mitchblue - Nov 23, 2013 at 12:47 PM

      Except the guy who won the Cy Young is going to ask for too much. He’s had a mediocre career, lets not overpay him because of 1 year.

      • hockeyfan28 - Nov 23, 2013 at 7:15 PM

        After the way he pitched this year can you blame him? Pitching wins the World Series give him the money

  7. alexo0 - Nov 23, 2013 at 11:06 AM

    The only part of the story that makes sense is that Jay-Z did not make the trip to Detroit. Not nearly upscale enough for him.

    • historiophiliac - Nov 23, 2013 at 11:43 AM

      Yeah, unlike OKC.

      BTW, direct flight from OKC to Willow Run? I think there’s 4 direct flights you can take from Oklahoma and Willow Run is NOT one. It definitely would have to be a chartered flight.

      • alexo0 - Nov 23, 2013 at 1:57 PM

        Jay-Z is a glamor whore. No glory in visiting Detroit or KC should they be interested, and especially not when he can be spotted courtside.

    • pisano - Nov 23, 2013 at 12:45 PM

      He’d fit right in, plenty of drug dealers in Detroit, he’d feel at home there. Remember ” The leopard sheds the fur, but never the spots”

      • asimonetti88 - Nov 23, 2013 at 2:03 PM

        “plenty of drug dealers”

        I believe the proper term is “sports agents in training”. Right Hova?

  8. stephenolszewski - Nov 23, 2013 at 11:27 AM

    As a Indians fan I’m hoping The Tigers don’t get Cano, Kinsler, Cabrera, Cano would be a insane Trio…but then again I thought the Angels with Puljos and Hamilton was going to be great

  9. tcclark - Nov 23, 2013 at 11:42 AM

    That was me, not Robinson Cano. I bought the new Star Trek movie on Blu-Ray in Willow Run, flew all the way home to Jersey, opened it up… Alvin and the Chipmunks… and not even the good one… the squeakqual. I had to fly back and return it. I don’t want that crap. Sorry for the confusion.

  10. historiophiliac - Nov 23, 2013 at 11:44 AM

    hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahah *gasp* hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha *gasp* hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

  11. 2dmo4 - Nov 23, 2013 at 11:50 AM

    The local sports show here in Detroit had heard a rumor that an air traffic controller from Willow Run Airport saw Cano at that airport yesterday. The hosts weren’t able to confirm this however.

  12. byjiminy - Nov 23, 2013 at 12:10 PM

    Maybe they could trade Kinsler to the Giants. He’s getting old enough, almost…

  13. keltictim - Nov 23, 2013 at 12:36 PM

    How do I get one of those special FAA things so tmz stops tracking me? Maybe you gotta be friends with potus and I am not on that Christmas card list

  14. joerymi - Nov 23, 2013 at 1:05 PM

    I love hot stove. Disappointed HBT was so late to this. I find it highly unlikely, but with a win now billionaire at the helm…who knows?

    IF they did sign Cano, Kinsler never suits up for the Tigers. My guess, they would look to package him with Porcello or Smyly.

    Again, insanely unlikely. Even if he did meet with them, it could be little more than a negotiating tactic.

  15. xjokerz - Nov 23, 2013 at 1:11 PM

    uh oh…AL fans shaking in their boots.

    #Go Tigs.

  16. bigtrav425 - Nov 23, 2013 at 1:56 PM

    Having and getting all that information is a little obsessive don’t ya think?

  17. jeffbbf - Nov 23, 2013 at 2:14 PM

    Having the info isn’t obsessive, but believing it is stupid. This is right out of the Boras playbook. Start a rumor that another team is interested in your client (the plane story is ingenious – they probably paid to fly the plane to Detroit), and have the only team with the interest and money to sign your player to bid against themselves. We’ll see how smart the Yankees’ front office is in the next month or so. Or, maybe, we’ll see how stupid some other GM might be.

    • xjokerz - Nov 23, 2013 at 2:48 PM

      just like the yankees saying cano wanted 300 million while Jay-Z came out and said he has no idea where that came from.

      • jeffbbf - Nov 23, 2013 at 3:31 PM

        It came from Cano – at least during the season. Cano asked the Yankees for a 1-year, $310 million contract at the all-star break. .

  18. dabossditka - Nov 23, 2013 at 2:44 PM

    I hope he does leave the Yankees. Gone are the days of playing for 1 team and actually caring about the game. It’s all about the money. It’s time to put a stop to all this $$ crap. Greedy players go away. Ho get hurt and cry in the corner.

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Nov 23, 2013 at 3:37 PM

      Gone are the days of playing for 1 team and actually caring about the game.

      You mean gone are the days of the reserve clause and indentured servitude right?

  19. drewzducks - Nov 23, 2013 at 2:48 PM

    Any chance he stumbled across Amelia Earhart during his “thorough checking”?

  20. sisisisisisisi - Nov 23, 2013 at 2:56 PM

    Kinsler is frowned upon changing position while he was in Texas. It’s not only wild but not believable.

  21. db2b2 - Nov 23, 2013 at 5:35 PM

    Elvis is alive. Tony Paul of the Detroit News did some pretty thorough checking on the matter and found nothing conclusive. But he also couldn’t rule it out.

  22. autmorsautlibertas - Nov 23, 2013 at 6:24 PM

    A-Rod moved from Short to Third when he went to New York. Cano could arguably play Third for Detroit.

  23. sdeberg - Nov 24, 2013 at 12:32 AM

    Who the f cares? He wants – or JayZ wants – this much $ to play a f-ing game of baseball?? Let him play for Detroit. Or Miami. Or wherever he wants to go.

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