Ichiro Suzuki Rumors

Yankees Re-Sign Ichiro Suzuki

The Yankees have officially re-signed Ichiro Suzuki, the team announced. It's a two-year contract worth $13MM.  Agent Tony Attanasio represents Ichiro.

Ichiro - Yankees (PW)

The Yankees have pursued a strategy of signing veterans (such as Kevin Youkilis, Andy Pettitte and Mariano Rivera) to one-year deals this winter, but were forced to make a two-year commitment to the 39-year-old Ichiro due to competing multiyear offers. The Phillies pushed hard for Ichiro and offered him a two-year, $14MM deal, while the Giants were believed to have offered the outfielder a two-year, $15MM contract. While the other offers were larger, Ichiro took the Yankees' contract after telling the team he wanted to remain in New York.  

Ichiro will join two other left-handed hitters in New York’s outfield: Curtis Granderson and Brett Gardner. The team is exploring the idea of adding a right-handed complement to the group, FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal reported earlier this offseason.

Ichiro ranked 40th on MLBTR’s list of top 50 free agents this offseason. The 39-year-old posted a .283/.307/.390 batting line in 663 plate appearances for the Mariners and Yankees this past season. However, his performance improved considerably after the Yankees acquired him in a midseason trade (he hit .322/.340/.454 with New York). Ichiro has 2,606 hits, two batting titles, ten All-Star Game selections and a career .322/.365/.419 in 12 MLB seasons.

Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com and WFAN's Craig Carton first reporting the deal was done (on Twitter). Rosenthal, ESPN's Buster Olney, Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News, Joel Sherman of the New York Post, and the New York Times' David Waldstein all added information about the various aspects of the signing.

Mark Polishuk and Mike Axisa also contributed to this post. Photo courtesy of US Presswire.

ESPN On Ichiro, Indians, Adams

Here are some rumors from ESPN.com's baseball writers, starting with a note from Buster Olney (all links go to Twitter)…

Yankees Likely To Re-Sign Ichiro

TUESDAY, 5:28pm: With Kevin Youkilis in the fold, the Yankees will next look to finalize a deal with Ichiro Suzuki, a source tells Jack Curry of the YES Network (via Twitter).  The pact could happen in the next 48 hours.

MONDAY, 3:47pm: The Yankees are moving closer to a deal with Ichiro and the sides are expected to agree to terms within the next few days, ESPN.com's Buster Olney reports (on Twitter).

10:08am: The Yankees will likely re-sign Ichiro Suzuki, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reported last night. The Yankees are showing strong interest in the free agent outfielder, Rosenthal writes. “They are all over him,” one person told FOX Sports.

If the sides complete a deal, Ichiro would join two other left-handed hitters in New York’s outfield: Curtis Granderson and Brett Gardner. The team is exploring the idea of adding a right-handed complement to the group, according to Rosenthal. However, bringing Ichiro back wouldn’t prevent the Yankees from re-signing the left-handed hitting Raul Ibanez.

Ichiro, a client of agent Tony Attanasio, would likely obtain a one-year deal from the Yankees, Rosenthal reports. A one-year deal would suit the Yankees, since they are aiming to avoid the $189MM luxury tax threshold by 2014. Ichiro ranked 40th on MLBTR’s list of top 50 free agents.

Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reported on Friday that the Yankees continue to talk with Ichiro, who is now 39 years old.

Free Agent Rumors: Dempster, Ichiro, Jackson, Tejada

Approximately half of the free agents on MLBTR’s top 50 list remain unsigned, which means there will be lots of action in the next few weeks. Here are the latest free agent updates from around MLB…

  • The Brewers, Red Sox and Royals are the "three main teams" looking at Ryan Dempster, reports Paul Sullivan of the Chicago Tribune (Twitter link).  This would seem to eliminate the Cubs, who we recently heard weren't negotiating with Dempster.
  • The Yankees are still talking to Ichiro Suzuki as they continue waiting to hear from Kevin Youkilis, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter). Youkilis is weighing multiple offers and the Indians are also bidding for his services.
  • The Royals and other teams seem “very cool” to Edwin Jackson, Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star reports (on Twitter). In other words they aren't overly eager to spend aggressively on him.
  • Braves GM Frank Wren said he has interest in certain outfielders as one-year stopgaps, ESPN.com’s Jerry Crasnick reports (on Twitter). The Braves need another outfielder, even after signing B.J. Upton.
  • The Diamondbacks are very interested in Miguel Tejada, Enrique Rojas of ESPNDeportes.com reports (on Twitter, in Spanish). The team offered Tejada a minor league deal, but he’d like a guaranteed contract.
  • The Marlins are only interested in Carl Pavano if he’ll accept a low base salary of $3MM or so plus incentives, Phil Mackey of ESPN 1500 reports (on Twitter). Pavano’s agent met with the Twins yesterday,  Mackey adds.

Phillies Notes: Willingham, Ross, Suzuki, Ellsbury

Here's the latest on Philadelphia's offseason dealings, courtesy of CSNPhilly.com's Jim Salisbury

  • Before the Phillies acquired Ben Revere from the Twins, they attempted to also get Josh Willingham in either the same trade package or in a separate deal.
  • The club is still in the market for a corner outfielder.  The Phillies "have seriously considered" signing Ichiro Suzuki and "have long liked" Cody Ross.
  • Any further upgrades may have to come via the free agency market since the Phillies don't have much prospect depth aside from possibly at catcher.  Salisbury notes that Tommy Joseph, the most well-regarded of the team's young catchers, "probably isn't going anywhere."
  • The Red Sox approached the Phillies about a trade of Jacoby Ellsbury for Cliff Lee, but the Phillies said that Lee wasn't available.  I can't blame the Phils for turning that offer down; even if they did want to move Lee, he would fetch far more on the trade market than just one year of Ellsbury, who hits free agency next winter.

NL West Notes: Brian Wilson, Dodgers, D’Backs

The NL West saw a few free agent signings today, as the Diamondbacks inked Eric Chavez and Wil Nieves and the Rockies re-signed Jeff Francis.  The latest from around the division:

Giants Rumors: Ichiro, Theriot, Swisher, Ben Francisco

The Giants picked up 2014 options on manager Bruce Bochy and GM Brian Sabean today, and they're working to bring second baseman Marco Scutaro back.  More on the team:

Latest On The Yankees

The Yankees have been eerily quiet so far at the 2013 Winter Meetings.  Still, here's the latest from GM Brian Cashman's media briefing.

Phillies Rumors: Hamilton, Fowler, Ichiro, Michael Young

The latest buzz on the Phillies, courtesy of Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com

  • GM Ruben Amaro told reporters he's more likely to land his center fielder through free agency than trade.  Salisbury says Michael Bourn doesn't appear to fit the team's profile, while they're lukewarm on a Shane Victorino reunion.  A corner player like Cody Ross could work.  
  • Amaro made a thinly-veiled reference to the one difference-maker on the market, understood to be Josh Hamilton.  The GM skirted the question as to whether he is pursuing Hamilton.  Salisbury considers it a long shot.

Earlier updates:

  • Though the team has some interest in the major free agent center fielders, they're also eyeing Dexter Fowler and Peter Bourjos as potential trade targets.  Bourjos is projected to start for the Halos, however.  The Phillies and Rockies have discussed Fowler, tweets Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.  He notes that the Rockies would want pitching in return.
  • There has been some communication between the Phillies and Ichiro Suzuki's camp, though it's unclear who reached out.
  • The Phillies have interest in the Rangers' Michael Young for third base, but they'd need Young to approve the trade and the Rangers to pick up part of the tab.  Young, 36, is owed $16MM in 2013, though part of his salary is deferred.

East Notes: Wright, Dickey, Hamilton, Ichiro

Here's a look at the some of the news out of the AL and NL East: