Yankees and Ichiro putting the finishing touches on a 2-year, $12-$13 million deal

ichiro-suzuki

The Yankees and Ichiro Suzuki are putting the finishing touches on a two-year deal worth between $12 and $13 million, according to Mark Feinsand of the NY Daily News. This confirms an earlier report from Jon Heyman of CBS Sports that the two sides were still working on a structure of a deal in the same range.

The Yankees have been strict on not offering multi-year deals this offseason. They only increased this offer to two years when at least two other teams, believed to be the Phillies and Giants, offered him two-years deals worth $14 million and $16 million respectively, according to Joel Sherman of the NY Post and Mark Feinsand of the NY Daily NewsHeyman reported that Ichiro wanted to be a Yankee so he passed up the other offers after the Yankees included the second year.

This is a bit of a risky move for the Yankees and one that seems kind of desperate too. Risky because while Ichiro did very well with the Yankees he also struggled for a year and a half with the Mariners and even if he does well in 2013, he’s going to be 40-years-old in 2014. Desperate because the Yankees didn’t make Russell Martin a multi-year offer which is especially odd considering it would be much easier to find another outfielder rather than another catcher.

The Yankes will now have an all left handed outfield with Curtis Granderson and Brett Gardner out there. So expect them to increase their efforts to finding a right handed hitting outfielder. They probably won’t want a big name like Cody Ross, but rather target Scott Hairston, if he’ll sign a one-year deal, or Matt Diaz. Diaz hasn’t been attached to the Yankees in any rumors yet, but would be a good fit because he has hit .324/.364/.498 against lefties in his career. He struggled a bit last season, but he still managed to hit much better against lefties.

Ichiro made $17 million last season, but the Yankees only paid him $2 million for the final two months of the season. Prorated, that’s $6 million over the course of the entire season. So at two-years and $12 million that’s basically the same amount they paid him last season over each of the next two years.

Ichiro is 39 now. Outside of two months at the end of last season, he has been a shell of his former self at the plate. The Yankees have seen the turnaround of one Hall of Famer in Derek Jeter recently though and are betting that they have already seen a turnaround in another.

This entry was posted in Yankees News and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to Yankees and Ichiro putting the finishing touches on a 2-year, $12-$13 million deal

  1. brian says:

    People are underselling the business aspect of Ichiro and this decision…

    Even now, he creates more *buzz* than any player on this team other than Jeter (yes, including Cano which is hard to fathom except that I watched it).. this contract more or less pays for itself… all he has to do is play well enough.. to play

    If you're thinking.. offering Ichiro 2 yrs isn't what's in the best interest of winning, thats too bad. The Yankees are now 100% a business, winning only matters in that it helps the bottom line

  2. It's not like the Yankees are going to reinvest that money into the team so Ichiro's contract paying for itself does nothing for us — the fans.

    • brian says:

      exactly why i added the third paragraph haha

      • Mark Panuthos says:

        Brian – Ichiro's contract will pay for itself? Yankee fans will fork out top dollar to watch Ichiro hit no higher than .270 while the Yankees battle the Sox for fourth place in the AL East?

  3. mariomendoza says:

    If they did something like make the contract for 1 year 10 million, with a 2 million dollar player option what would the luxury tax hit be?

  4. Gonzalo Hiram says:

    I guess u are talking about Matt Diaz

  5. Adam says:

    Let's try Matt Diaz, not Mike Diaz….

  6. Yeah sorry about the Mike/Matt mistake. Obviously I meant Matt. I even double checked, realized I was wrong, and never went back and changed it.

  7. Mike Sommer says:

    I wonder if Peter Bourjos could be available now that the Angels got Hamilton. Young (26 next year), righty bat, good D. Never played a corner OF position but probably could. Wouldn't play much but could play vs. lefties and spell vs.righties as needed. Can steal a base. Not a star, but a complimentary and inexpensive fit? Another blog (I read a few as well as write my own) suggests Bourjos and C Hank Conger from the Angels. Wouldn't be bad. Two youngsters, Conger a switch-hitting C, and that is a plus. Conger hasn't hit much in his time in the majors but will be just 25 next year, and does have 224 AB (.201-6-25, OPS+ 73). A .297 hitter in the minors, and consistent there, maybe he just needs regular playing time to get that average up. But two youngsters, inexpensive, meets needs… I wonder if the Yankees have good trade pieces and are a match for the Angels?

  8. Gonzalo Hiram says:

    Juan Rivera could be another similar option to Matt Diaz