Lorenzo Cain is now a member of the Milwaukee Brewers, after spending the last seven memorable seasons in Kansas City. He is seventh in franchise history in WAR, according to Baseball Reference, and third all-time in defensive WAR at 25.7, behind only Frank White and Fred Patek.
In addition to being one of the best defensive players in the game, Cain also was an All-Star in 2015, finishing third in MVP voting that year, and was the 2014 ALCS MVP, and he did it all with one of the best smiles in the league. He also provided countless memories to last a lifetime. Let’s look back on some of our favorite Lorenzo Cain memories in Kansas City.
10. All those times Salvy bothered him
It wasn’t exactly one moment, but Lorenzo Cain was the subject of numerous pranks and harassment from Salvador Perez. Salvy called Cain his hermanito, Spanish for “little brother”. Give Lorenzo credit for taking it all with a smile.
9. Lorenzo robs Pedro Alvarez of a home run
Defense was Lorenzo’s calling card, as his glove saved many runs each year for the Royals. This 2016 play in Baltimore was a great illustration of how valuable he was, as he takes runs off the board for the Orioles, robbing slugger Pedro Alvarez of a potential two-run home run.
8. That time he sang “Purple Rain” in Minnesota.
It was about a month after Prince died, and the Royals were in his home state of Minnesota, playing the Twins. The Royals won 10-4 with Lorenzo Cain setting the pace with a first inning double and two hits. Salvador Perez was chosen to do the post-game interview with Joel Goldberg, but it Lorenzo turned the tables on Salvy and interrupted him with a sweet tribute to Prince to make the moment memorable.
Do you guys need Lorenzo Cain singing Purple Rain to live on forever via the internet? pic.twitter.com/n2vvS30vHp— Shaun Newkirk (@Shauncore) May 24, 2016
7. George Springer can only tip his cap at Lorenzo’s robbery
The Royals were scuffling the first week of the 2017 season going into Houston, a team many expected to contend that year (eventually winning it all). But the Royals jumped on the Astros and it was Lorenzo Cain that helped hold the lead after Astros outfielder George Springer drilled a pitch to right center that looked like potential extra bases. The young Springer could only tip his cap to Lo.
6. “I am cornholio!”
The Royals had a target on their back in 2015 when they were seemingly getting into dust-ups with every opponent they faced. In an April matchup against the White Sox, the two teams emptied their benches when Yordano Ventura and Adam Eaton jawed at each other. White Sox pitcher Jeff Samardzija seemed to seek Lorenzo out, and the resulting fracas left Lorenzo looking a bit like Beavis from Beavis and Butthead.
The Cornholio/Lorenzo Cain pictures from last night's scuffle are gold. pic.twitter.com/a39UifkYbh— Josh Campbell (@JoshMCampbell) April 24, 2015
5. Lorenzo Cain flashes his glove against the Angels
The Royals were riding high off their amazing 2014 Wild Card win, but everyone expected the show to end against the 98-win Angels in the ALDS. In Game One, it looked like the Angels might jump on starter Jason Vargas. But Lorenzo Cain had other plans, robbing two hits in the first inning, and setting the tone for the series.
4. Cain ties franchise record with three-home run game
Lorenzo was not exactly a power hitter but he developed solid power for an outfielder over the years with his “lean-back” approach. In a May 2016 game in Yankee Stadium, Lorenzo Cain smacked a third-inning home run into the right field seats. In the fifth, he drilled one off the back of the bullpen wall. In the eighth, with the Royals down a run, Cain tied it up with his third home run of the game, the ninth time a Royals player had hit three home runs in a game.
3. Cain’s defense wins ALCS MVP
After sweeping the Angels, the Royals kept the good times rolling in the 2014 ALCS against the Orioles. Lorenzo had a fantastic series, going 8-for-15 (.538) with two walks and five runs scored. In addition to his bat, he helped the team with his glove, robbing J.J. Hardy of extra bases in this play in Game 2.
2. Lorenzo ices the 2015 World Series
Lorenzo stole four bases in the 2015 World Series - including the first one to give the world free Taco Bell. But his bat did some damage as well, and he was the one that let Royals fans relax and enjoy their imminent championship. The Royals were already up 4-2 on the Mets in extra innings when Cain uncleared the bases with a three-run double, putting the champagne on ice.
1. Scoring from first on a single in the 2015 ALCS
This is what I’ll probably remember Lorenzo for the most. In Game Six of the ALCS, the Royals and Jays were tied 3-3 in the eighth with Cain at first. Eric Hosmer drilled a pitch down the right field line for a single, but Cain was not content to just go first to third. Thanks to good scouting by the Royals, and great hustle by Cain, Lorenzo was able to circle the bases and score on an amazing play to put the Royals en route to their second consecutive league pennant.
What did we miss? What were some of your most memorable moments with Lorenzo Cain?