23 Jul 2012
We should simply acknowledge that we don’t have a clue what Brian Cashman is up to. Jack Curry is reporting that the Yankees have traded for Ichiro Suzuki. In exchange for Ichiro, who will be a free agent after this season, the Yankees gave up D.J. Mitchell and Danny Farquhar.
Let’s cover what Ichiro can’t do first. He can’t get on base very much anymore and he can’t hit for average, power, or against lefties. But, he can run and play defense. Assuming the Yankees have made it clear to him that he will be a part-time player, I don’t see a lot of downside in this deal.
Mitchell has never been considered more than a fringe prospect and he has been hit hard at Scranton this year. Farquhar is a guy who has bounced all over the waiver wire this year. He started the season with Toronto, got DFA’ed and picked up by Oakland and then picked up by the Yankees when Oakland DFA’ed him. The Yankees also DFA’ed him, but he passed through waivers and was assigned to Trenton.
So, this is essentially a salary dump by Seattle. (And I should note that the Yankees are getting some cash in this deal too.) The Yankees get a guy who can provide excellent defense in left or right, swipe a bag and still do some damage against RHP. This will allow them to keep Ibanez out of the field. Pretty good move by Cashman in my mind.
UPDATE 6:34 Joel Sherman reports that the Yankees will pay just over $2 million to the Ichiro for the rest of the year. So, this basically boils down to which player do you like more in a big spot- Ichiro or Dewayne Wise?
UPDATE 11;00pm A few notes. The Yankees started a lineup with more than 17,000 career hits in the majors tonight. That has to be close to a record, no?
I like that Ichiro deferred to Bernie and didn’t ask for #51. That number should remain out of circulation for a few more years.
Finally, nice job by the Seattle fans and Ichiro when he came up to the plate for the first time tonight.