The Yanks are coming to Safeco Field tonight for the first of a three-game set with the Mariners. Ten-time All-Star Ichiro Suzuki was traded to the team for two minor league pitchers, D.J. Mitchell and Danny Farquhar and cash considerations, (according to MLB.com).
Hitting a career-low .261 with just four HR and 15 stolen bases, the 38-year-old former Rookie of the Year and AL MVP joins a Yankees team with not only a stacked lineup, but also the best record in baseball.
There were many conflicting opinions in Seattle about whether or not to bring Ichiro, at $18 million and in the last year of his contract, back next season to end his career with the Mariners. Jay Buhner, the Seattle fan favorite whom Ichiro replaced in right field, told 710 ESPN Radio Seattle on July 17,
"I'd vomit. I mean, really, no offense. No offense, we've got to get this organization turned around. You can't be spending all the money on one guy."
No offense, "Bone," but it ain't going to stop teams from trying. (see: Angels, Los Angeles)
The question that stymied Seattle fans (which unlike the Sasquatch, do actually exist) are asking now is, "That's it?! A surefire Hall of Famer and that's all we could get for him?! From the Yankees, no less?!"
Looks that way, and as reports continue to surface, it appears that Ichiro approved the deal to join the "Evil Empire" and thereby clinched the deal.
Are we seeing something similar to the time when Ray Bourque left the Boston Bruins for the Colorado Avalanche and a long-sought Stanley Cup after 21 seasons? Maybe. It's obvious that Ichiro is not the player he once was, and had he stayed with the floundering Mariners, the chances were astronomical he'd be anything but more a window dressing for a team that needs more than one good player.
Still, if you didn't have reason to watch tonight's game, now you do.
As the late Dave Niehaus always said, "My, oh my!"