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Friday, January 12, 2007

Ichiro’s Last Year in Seattle?

posted by on January 12 at 12:16 PM

U.S.S. Mariner is reporting that Ichiro has told the Japan Baseball Daily he wants out of Seattle after the 2007 season. He wants to play for a contenderóBoston, New York, etc.

Update: Ichiro’s agent tells U.S.S. Mariner the story is hooey.

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Isn't this rather old news?


Posted by Jensen Interceptor | January 12, 2007 12:37 PM

More power to him. Ichiro is too awesome to rot away here in Seattle. We either should put together a team that will win, or trade him for some up and comers.

Posted by John | January 12, 2007 12:47 PM

Trade him now for some starting pitching.

Posted by DOUG. | January 12, 2007 12:50 PM

Ichiro's pretty much the only thing obscuring the M's true reflection in the mirror.

Posted by Lloyd Clydesdale | January 12, 2007 1:12 PM

Since the M's aren't going to be contending this year or next, it's time to get some value for him. Unofortunately, he's a free agent after this year, which hurts his trade potential, and, while he is overrated when he plays in right field, he's seriously UNDERrated when he's playing center. I'm afraid, Doug, that good starting pitching for him is more than we can really expect Bavasi to accomplish here.

Time to blow it up and start over.

Posted by Fnarf | January 12, 2007 1:17 PM

"Unofortunately, he's a free agent after this year, which hurts his trade potential, and..."

Perhaps, however much would depend on what you would receive in return, but
I don't think we should have a great deal of confidence in what Mariner management would gain from any attempt at creating a favorable trade. I just don't think they're capable of crafting a good trade.

From a business standpoint, the Mariners organization will take a substantial hit on revenue loss from Japanese fans in the event Suzuki
leaves. I'm curious if they really comprehend the potential losses.


Posted by Jensen Interceptor | January 12, 2007 1:58 PM

Are you kidding? Of course they comprehend the potential losses. This team's ownership looks only at the balance books and not at the win-loss column. Their single-mindedness is what has put them in their current position--they tried to scrimp (not paying for the bats they needed to win down the stretch in 01, 02, 03) and held on to "fan favorites" who were well past their prime, just because they thought it would keep fans in the seats. For a long time, they were, according to Forbes, the most profitable franchise in baseball. Yet they couldn't find an extra 5 million at the trade deadline to rent a power hitter.

The ballpark is full of bells & whistles and stupid "family friendly" policies (no "yankees suck" t-shirts?!!), and the product they put on the field is absolute shit.

It's a damn shame when a bunch of fuckers making money hand over fist get unnecessary public investment in their business (in the form of a stadium with an unnecessary retractable roof--Seattle gets fewer rainouts than all but the Southwest teams during the baseball season--look it up); it's an absolute insult when the benefits of this public charity refuse to reward their investors, the taxpayers, with a decent team. What a bunch of greedy fucks.

Posted by pr | January 12, 2007 2:06 PM

Nice flame job, PR. And it's all true. The M's have been doing quite the revenue department, thank you very much Seattle. They've been selling The Product. I'll admit that I'm a die-hard chump that's in it to kinda hopefully maybe win it in '07 with my ticket package renewal.
The bells and whistles is true. It's soul crushing to any baseball fan, the stupid fucking extraneous 'entertainment'. Those goddamned dancing groundskeepers have to fucking stop NOW. Show me a goddamned elephant running the bases atop a balance ball. Now that's something.
I know there's stupidness going on upstairs at the M's. But if they've been smart enough to happy-up the fans in past years, I don't see how they trade away a bunch of their ('07 storyline-ready) much-touted "minor league talent" for a bunch of cardboard cut-outs. The fans were already primed to watch these kids grow up on the field this year. I just don't get it.

Posted by Lloyd Clydesdale | January 12, 2007 2:50 PM

Hey PR,

Not sure where you get your stats from, but wouldn't part of the reason the M's don't rain out is because they have a retractable roof?

Posted by John | January 12, 2007 3:44 PM

It would be cruel to have Ichiro get stuck in this doomed franchise any longer. He wears #51 in honor of Bernie Williams, his hero, and I've been predicting for years he'd be in pinstripes any year now.

The Mariners have the stink of desperation and death around them now, and will never match their franchise peaks of 1995 and 2001. With baseball falling apart, MLB would be wise to look into contracting and dumping teams like Kansas City and Seattle that will never go anywhere.

Posted by Peter | January 12, 2007 4:11 PM

Give the Mariner's track record this off season, if they trade him it will probably be something like:

a) To the Red Sox for Joel Pinero
b) Philadelphia for Jamie Moyer
c) any team for an aging pitcher who's best year was 5 years ago. I'd say Randy Johnson if he didn't just get traded.

The thing is everyone's job is on the line this season and over the last two months we have witnessed the absolute best they can do.

Posted by GDC | January 12, 2007 4:18 PM

John: no, it rains far fewer days IN SUMMER in Seattle than just about anyplace in the country. The PCL used to play 200-game seasons in the open air here.

Actually it rains fewer inches per year in Seattle than in any of the Eastern cities as well.

Posted by Fnarf | January 12, 2007 4:36 PM

Ahh, the PCL. Those evenings at Sicks Stadium..the old guys in the stands smoking their cigars; good hot dogs and the hated Portland Beavers' Lou Pinella tearing up the base path.....

The Mariners' money making days are over with. Not even $2.00 beer night going to bring anyone to the stadium to watch crap on the field. I estimate Mariner gate reciepts will be down by 20% in 2007. Lose a marquee player like Suzuki and figure 95% of Japan originated revenuw income is completely wiped out. See how fast a small market team can become a small market team ...and attract the attention of Oklahomans and their ilk.


Posted by Jensen Interceptor | January 12, 2007 5:44 PM

You're right, Jensen. The park was showing clear signs of that last year. Pretty empty except for series like the Sox and Yankees, or on Friday or Saturday nights (where the 300 level seemed to be full of date-nighters and group outings).

The Mariners had a couple of grace-period years with the fans thanks to Ichiro's Sisler-breaking hit record in the roster house-cleaning 2004 season. But Jensen, as you state, the M's are out of time in 2007. Bring on the new lame player commercials, t-shirt cannon, and 3X more powerboat races.

Posted by Lloyd Clydesdale | January 13, 2007 8:41 AM

This story has one little error: Ichiro didn't tell me he was thinking about leaving, he told Sankei Sports.

On the possibility of Ichiro going to the Yankees, as is being mentioned in some quarters, I checked with a Yankees beat writer about this and he thinks the Yanks will pass due to their present outfield setup.

I think that could mean he will end up in Boston or L.A. via free agency. Or Bavasi will move him for Kent Bottenfield (sorry, a former Angels fans still smarting over the Edmonds trade to St. Louis).

Posted by Gary Garland | January 13, 2007 7:37 PM

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