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New York Yankees: What Are the Odds Bombers Re-Sign Robinson Cano Before FA?

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New York Yankees: What Are the Odds Bombers Re-Sign Robinson Cano Before FA?
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We all know the situation by now.

The Yankees really want to keep Robinson Cano around for a long time.

The second basemen is one year away from hitting free agency and is likely in line for a major payday.

The Yankees are also historically known as a team that doesn't negotiate with players before or during a season.

However, for Cano, it looks like the Bombers are willing to make a major exception for their star slugger.

Wallace Matthews of ESPN New York reported that the Yankees and Cano's agent, Scott Boras, have had discussions about a possible extension.

"We expressed to Scott how much we liked Robbie and what a great Yankee he's been, and we hope he continues his career here for a long time to come," (Hal) Steinbrenner said. "We just indicated to him, on a very preliminary basis, that we were willing to consider a significant long-term contract, and left it at that. There's nothing really to report since then."

In 2013, Cano is playing out the final year of his contract worth $15 million, but there has been a lot of talk that the Yankees second baseman could get a deal similar to Albert Pujols' 10-year, $240 million deal or Joey Votto's 10-year, $225 million deal.

Matthews also mentioned Cano could get a similar deal to the one Felix Hernandez got with the Mariners, which was for seven years and $175 million.

The one obstacle that could hamper the negotiations between the Yankees and Cano is the self-mandated $189 million payroll mark that the Bombers are trying to get to before 2014.

Will the Yankees re-sign Robinson Cano before he hits free agency?

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It's seen as a goal, but Steinbrenner is looking at it as more of a requirement for the team.

You also have to factor in that the Yankees have $86.5 million tied to just five players alone in 2014: $23 million will go to CC Sabathia, $22.5 million will go to Mark Teixeira and $25 million will go to Alex Rodriguez.

With those three alone, that's $70 million. Ichiro Suzuki will make $6.5 million as well in the new two-year deal he signed with the team this winter.

Plus, Derek Jeter has an $8 million option that could go up to as much as $17 million based on how well he plays, and the team has to figure out if they have to give Curtis Granderson an extension or not after 2013.

After 2013, the Yankees will have Mariano Rivera's, Andy Pettitte's, Hiroki Kuroda's, Kevin Youkilis' and Granderson's contracts all off the books, which is a combined $64 million that could be used to get Cano back.

The Yankees would like it if they didn't have another major contract hampering their payroll, but with Cano, the team may have no other choice but to pay him.

The question becomes, can the Yankees get the deal done before Cano hits free agency?

Before Cano signed Boras to be his agent, I think the Yankees would have gotten the deal done by now and this issue wouldn't even be talked about at this point.

But there's a reason why players like Cano hire a super agent like Boras for one simple reason: to get paid.

And Boras will use the deals given to Pujols, Votto and King Felix as a starting point in negotiations with the Yankees.

If the Yankees don't lock up Cano before free agency, there are teams like the Los Angeles Dodgers, Los Angeles Angels and Washington Nationals with large checkbooks and GMs who are willing to spend on talent to improve their clubs.

Rob Carr/Getty Images

Cano would certainly fit all of their needs.

But he fits the Yankees' need the most because he is in fact their best everyday player.

Just how high are the Yankees willing to go to keep Cano? Would they be willing to go over the seven- or eight-year mark in a contract?

Right now, I think the Yankees will do whatever it takes to get Cano back, so I'll say it's a 50-50 shot of getting Cano back before free agency.

The team has yet to negotiate with Granderson regarding a new deal, and I think they will wait until the end of the season to determine if he comes back or not.

But with Cano and Boras, I think this will be ongoing through 2013 with the Yankees.

In the end, it all depends on if Cano gets an offer he is satisfied with taking and if the Yankees can live with the fact that they might have to overpay him in order for him to stay in the Bronx.

Stay tuned, Yankees Universe.

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