Ichiro Suzuki will forever be linked to the Seattle Mariners, but he must have enjoyed playing in New York last season. After he was traded to the Yankees, Ichiro's numbers improved, and he was able to play in the postseason - something he was only able to do once with the Mariners. He liked New York so much that he is about to sign for less money than he could otherwise get.
According to Wallace Matthews of ESPN New York, Ichiro is close to signing a two-year, $13 million contract with the Yankees. Matthews says sources had told him that two other teams were interested in Ichiro and has offered him more money - about $2 million more - but Ichiro wants to play in New York.
Ichiro will provide stability to the Yankees lineup. He is one of the most reliable players in the game. Him and the DL just do not match. Ichiro has played in at least 145 games every year of his career. His shortest season came in 2009 when he played in 146 games.
Ichiro struggled in his last two seasons in Seattle, but he seemed to find himself again after the trade to New York. In Seattle last season, Ichiro hit .261/.288/.353. After the trade to New York, he hit .322/.340/.454.
Ichiro will be in pinstripes until his 41st birthday. He will need to average about 200 hits per season to reach the 3,000 hit milestone while with the Yankees. At his age, it's unlikely that he will be able to do so, but I wouldn't put anything past him. His last 200-hit season came in 2010.
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