Ichiro traded to Yankees
The New York Yankees have traded for Seattle Mariners outfielder Ichiro Suzuki, reports YES' Jack Curry.
The Yankees and Mariners begin a three-game series in Seattle tonight. It's unclear whether Ichiro will make his debut Monday, but it would seem likely his first game with the Yankees will come in Seattle.
The veteran outfielder will likely play part-time in left field as New York tries to overcome the absence of Brett Gardner, who will miss the rest of the season with an elbow injury. Raul Ibanez and Andrew Jones have played left field in his absence.
Ichiro, the 2001 AL MVP in his first season in America, made 10 straight All-Star teams from 2001 to 2010. He is a free agent after the season.
But Ichiro has struggled this year. He is hitting only .261 with a .288 on-base percentage. It seems likely that he would be part of a platoon in left field, though neither Jones nor Ibanez has played particularly well this year. The Yankees may be hoping that playing in New York for a title contender will rejuvenate Ichiro.
The Mariners released a statement Monday saying, in part, that Ichiro had requested a trade weeks ago. (Read the full statement here, via The Seattle Times). The Mariners will pick up nearly $3 million of the $5 million left on Ichiro's contract this season, FOX's Ken Rosenthal reports.