HOUSTON (AP) — Robinson Cano has 2,129 hits in his 12-year major league career. The number of Air Jordans in his Seattle closet is only slightly less than that.
“I would say here at home I have a couple of thousand,” the Mariners’ All-Star second baseman said.
And that outlandish number doesn’t even count a second collection in one of his homes in the Dominican Republic.
“I don’t know how many I have there,” he said, “but it’s a lot.”
So with more than five years’ worth of Jordans, there’s no chance he’s worn all of them, right?
“No, no, no,” he said shaking his head with a laugh.
The supremely fashion-conscious Cano does wear many of the sneakers, and he talks with joy about entering his massive closet (check out a fraction of it on one of his recent Instagram posts ) and knowing he’ll have the perfect pair for any outfit.
“It’s good whenever I want to wear something with a shirt I don’t have to worry about if I (have) to get a sneaker to match this shirt,” he said.
With a pair in every imaginable hue and pattern it would certainly be hard to pick the best of his collection, but like a father asked to choose his favorite child, Cano simply can’t make that call. Cano’s collection is so vast and ever-growing that he sometimes wants to give some away to friends and family. The problem is that almost no one wears his rather large size 13.
“I have a friend in the Dominican. He’s the only guy I know who is my size,” Cano said. “So always give stuff away to him.”
Even for someone who exists in a world where this kind of excess is almost run of the mill, Cano knows that some might raise an eyebrow at the sheer number of shoes in his collection. The 33-year-old makes no apologies for it.
“That’s what I love and … I don’t do anything besides I love clothes and cars,” he said. “And that’s something that I love to do it and I enjoy it.”
And if his Jordan collection wasn’t already ridiculous enough, he’s quick to point out that he has another closet filled with shoes from designers like Gucci, Christian Louboutin and Louis Vuitton for the times he needs to dress up.
Fashion has long been a priority to Cano and he vividly remembers admiring the look of his father, Jose Cano, as a child.
“I always try to look good and look clean and nice and I’ve always loved fashion,” Cano said. “I grew up with my dad — he loved to dress.”
After taking early fashion cues from his pops, Cano gradually developed his own style by experimenting with different looks and seeing what cuts and colors made him feel the best. For the last three years he’s worked with a stylist to take his fashion to the next level after signing a 10-year, $240 million contract with the Mariners in December 2013.
Although he leans on his stylist to find hard-to-get items and limited edition designer shoes, he’s certainly still more than capable of putting together his own show-stopping style
Ask the charismatic Cano what he likes best about fashion and he flashes perhaps his best accessory — that huge smile — and leans in as if he’s about to let you in on a secret.
“I most enjoy it when people say you look good,” he said. “I always try to find the stuff that really looks good on me. Because not everyone can wear every style. Trying to have what looks good on me and what is the best for me.”
That attention to style was on full display on the day Cano discussed his fashion. He wore a custom-made pebble gray linen jacket with expertly stitched lapels and matching trousers paired with a crisp white shirt which he buttoned to the very top. The suit was made by a tailor in New York who has handled the work for the past five years.
It was a rather subdued look for Cano, who leans toward more flashy ensembles when he isn’t with the team. He’ll try any color, cut or style and never limits himself.
“If you feel good just wear it no matter what people say,” he said. “Not everyone is going to like it. But if it feels good yourself wear it. It’s kind of the same thing like when you play, not everyone is going to like the way you play.”
Cano left the spotlight of playing for the New York Yankees to sign with the Mariners three years ago. Though far removed from the Big Apple-glare in Seattle, it was then that he added to his already significant star power when he became the first client signed to rapper Jay Z’s Roc Nation sports agency.
Being friends with a rap mogul has certain perks. A major one came when Jay Z gifted Cano with a Shawn Carter Classic Fusion by Hublot watch for his birthday. Only 100 of the timepieces were made in 18-karat yellow gold featuring the Shawn Carter logo. Price tag: $33,900.
That isn’t even Cano’s favorite piece of jewelry. That title goes to a three-dimensional chain designed by his jeweler and made entirely of gold and platinum R’s and C’s to represent his initials.
“I wanted to do something different and he did a good job,” Cano said.
That was three years ago and now he never takes it off. You can sometimes see it peeking out of the top of his jersey during games.
Cano has teammates Felix Hernandez and Nelson Cruz to form a trio so fashionable that their travel days often look less like baseball trips and more like a stroll down a runway in Paris. The three delight in one-upping each other and Cano enjoys seeing the outfits his buddies put together.
“I don’t like to be the only one that looks good or dresses the best on the team,” he said. “It always looks good when everyone looks nice and is looking fresh.”