“At the beginning we talked a lot but since that time, zero,’’ agent Tony Attanasio said of discussions with the Yankees. “As far as we are concerned we don’t care what the Yankees do. We have had conversations with multiple clubs. If we see something we like he will go through with it.’
Didn’t he just say he was willing to wait for the Yankees to get all of their pitching signings done? I wasn’t imagining this, right? It did happen and it happened in the not-so-distant past. So why all the urgency now?
The bad thing for the Yankees is that the free agent outfielders who are available have a lot of red flags attached to them in different ways. In the case of some like Michael Bourn, they’re too expensive or in the case of Shane Victorino, they want to be signed for too many years. Then you have someone like Josh Hamilton who is just a giant red flag personified with his off the field issues.
Another checkmark in the ‘con’ column that the Yankees have on their pros and cons whiteboard (stay with me here) is that if Ichiro is signed, the team will have two players in the outfield who aren’t known for their power numbers. Sure, the speed on the bases would be a good thing with both Brett Gardner and Ichiro but the Yankees have just lost Russell Martin to the Pirates and will be losing Nick Swisher to a now unknown team. They need to replace their power in the lineup somehow. And with Derek Jeter coming back from a major injury, Alex Rodriguez growing older by the minute and Mark Teixeira declining offensively faster than anyone anticipated, the Yankees could be in big trouble.
Then again, maybe not. People have been declaring the Yankees “too old” for years now and they still continue to win 90+ games a season and make the playoffs.
There has also been talk that someone like Scott Hairston could be acquired by the Yankees as well. Some people think that maybe he could platoon with Ichiro. If that happens, the Yankees will have a lot of positions being shared by players. And money-wise Hairston could make sense, he only made $1.1M last season with the Mets.
So what do you think the Yankees should do? Should they say, “Nice knowing ya!” to Ichiro or should they give him another shot?