Seattle Mariners Want Ichiro Suzuki On Roster for Japanese Series
Ichiro Suzuki‘s time as a Seattle Mariners player is not over. At least, not if Ichiro doesn’t want it to be. Seattle GM Jerry Dipoto has already stated that Ichiro will put on the Mariners uniform at least 2 more times.
The announcement came from the Mariners earlier this week and confirmed a long-expected rumor: Ichiro’s playing career is not over. At least, not yet. The team wishes to add Ichiro to the roster for Spring Training and have him on the 28 man roster when the team opens up the MLB season with a quick 2-game series in Japan.
Of course, Ichiro did play for the Mariners briefly in 2018, and it was an unmitigated disaster. A pure publicity stunt poorly shrowded as a baseball move, Ichiro slashed just .205/.255/.205 in 44 AB’s, providing a -0.5 bWAR. Yes, you and I were more valuable to the team last year than Ichiro.
Of course, yours truly roasted the team when they signed him March. Then again when he made the team. And again whenever he was in the lineup. And finally when the team sent down the hot Guillermo Heredia for a week to try and “save face” with Ichiro.
So clearly the Mariners are back for round 2 of the publicity stunt. And yet, I couldn’t care less about it. Why the change of heart? Because the Mariners themselves have done the same. They are not going to be a true contender in 2019, and have said as much on several occasions.
Last year, they attempted to sell us on the idea they were a competitive team, willing to do anything to break their streak. And as I pointed out numerous times, that was a load of BS so long as Ichiro was on the roster.
But now with the team finally being honest about where they are at, as well as the expanded rosters and the fact that this stunt is happening thousands of miles away, I am all for it. Ichiro has an opportunity to wear the Navy and Teal one more time, in front of his fellow countrymen before he rides off into the sunset.
Unless the Mariners continue to charade on game 3 of the season, adding a little tip of the cap to a franchise great in a once in a lifetime fashion is easy to stomach. At least, now that the team has finally stopped lying to you and me about their intentions.