Ichiro shipped to Yankees for some pitchers

In a move not many people saw coming, the Seattle Mariners have unloaded Ichiro Suzuki to the New York Yankees for a couple of younger relief pitchers, DJ Mitchell and Danny Farquar Farqhuar Farquhar. The Mariners will also reportedly eat about 4.5 million of Ichiro’s remaining salary for this season. Now some may be surprised by the somewhat low return for Ichiro, but those people may not have seen him play in the last 2 seasons or know how to use a computer.

You see, Ichiro’s been not too great over the past 2 seasons. Of the 170 players who have had at least 700 PAs over that period, Ichiro’s wOBA of .286 ranks 160th. That’s just ahead of Gordon Beckham. And just behind Ryan Theriot. So, he’s basically been similar to some pretty awful middle infielders. Now, let’s be fair – Ichiro used to be good. One could even say he was quite good. But those days have passed. Add on the fact that he’s a free agent at the end of the year, and you see him being traded for 2 non-prospects, including one who’s been designated-for-assignment multiple times this year.

The trade gives Ichiro a chance to play in the postseason for the first time since his rookie year in 2001. Do you remember that year? That was the year the Mariners won 116 games. In 2010 and 2011 combined, the Mariners won 128 games. That’s only 12 more than they won in that one really good season. Ichiro is now old. He’s not the premier player he once was. But he can still probably provide some value against righties in a platoon role, or off the bench. Maybe.

*This trade has actually happened, unlike the Ryan Dempster one. Probably.

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