Should the Mariners Resign Ichiro?

Stay? Go? You Decide?

The 2011 season has been a disappointment for the Seattle Mariners 10 year veteran presence in right field.  His stats are the lowest they have ever been in nearly every category.


The 37 year old international superstar was left out of the all-star section for the first time in his MLB career with experts declaring that Ichiro could no longer be considered an elite outfielder.

That being said, Ichiro is batting .273 for the season with 175 hits, 40 stolen bases and an OPS of .649.  With his glove Ichiro has a .985 fielding percentage with only 4 errors on the year, plus a career high 5 double plays.  This past week Ichiro surpassed Micky Mantle in the all-time hits list.

In the worst season of his life he would still be ranked in the top 100 active players in baseball.

If this were a prospect the Mariners would be falling all over themselves trying to sign him.  However… he is not a prospect making league minimum.

Should The M's Resign The 37 Year old?

He is a 37 year old athlete that is pulling in 18 Million dollars for 2011.

His contract is up for extension at the end of the season.

Which leads one to wonder if the Mariners should resign Suzuki or not.

Why they should:

  • Ichiro is a model baseball player.  With 15 of the 33 players in the Mariners clubhouse being rookies they need veterans to inspire and lead the team into 2012
  • Ichiro has helped make the Mariners globally recognizable.  He takes 18 Million, but probably helps the club pull in at least the much in marketing and merchandising.
  • Ichiro is still a great baseball player who, I think, is loyally dedicated to the team.  Shouldn’t the management and the fans give him the same loyalty in return?

Why they shouldn’t:

  • Ichiro seems unwilling to change.  The man is a model of routine, but also of stubbornness.  He seems to be working on pursuing the 4000 hit mark instead of trying to do what is best for the team.  If he isn’t willing to take one for the team, does the team really want him?
  • Ichiro takes up a huge chunk of the payroll.  The Mariners would be able to pursue some other high quality free agents and add some much needed power to the lineup.
  • Ichiro is getting old.  This season could be the indicator that even the greatest of athletes can’t outrun time.  How much more do we want to pay on declining consistency?


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  • Baseball Man

    They should have traded him before this season started when he still had a great market value but the stupidity of the Mariners front office and ignorant fans wouldn’t hear of it so now we are stuck with an 18 million dollar lead off hitter that can’t lead anymore!!!

    • Scannerguy


  • I understand your frustration.  Hindsight is always 20/20.  Remember going INTO 2011 Ichiro was the only player that the Mariners felt they could get a consistence performance from.  That is a lot of pressure upon one individual.  If the rest of line up was solid it is likely that Ichiro’s slump wouldn’t have been that big of a deal.  What Ichrio has shown in the second half of the season is that he is able to compensate and adjust out of a slump.  In the past 30 days Ichiro has been hitting .302 with 4 home runs, 15 RBI’s and 10 stolen bases.  Not every player can mentally move past a slump.

  • J M Lindley

    Ichiro needs the support of the Mariners fans. He is a hall of fame player and
    the city needs to support a player with that much dedication to the game.
    When you think of the Yankees Ruth, Mantle and a few others come to mind.
    With Seattle its Edgar and Ichiro. Ichiro more than Edgar make the team
    memorable. He will end up this year with probably 185 to 190 hits. You don’t
    toss out that many hits. He plays his position great and he is a great leadoff
    hitter. I am sure the Yankees will take him. Then you can watch him lead off against
    the Mariners.

    • I agree that fans have a knee jerk reaction to a lot of things.  That happens when there hasn’t been a lot of winning.  Ichiro had an off year, but get rid of him?  I doubt that will happen.  However I think we will see his role change in the next few seasons.

  • Anonymous

    Wayne Gretzky got traded from the Edmonton Oilers, Brett Favre left the Packers, it happens folks. Ever to our favorites. I’d like to see him retire an M, but sometimes business rears its ugly head.

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