The Seattle Mariners and New York Yankees are connected forever, from the iconic 1995 Division Series to the current player connections of Ichiro Suzuki, Michael Pineda and Jesus Montero. I asked Tanya Bondurant of Pinstriped Bible a few questions about the state of the Yankees for this series preview.
Scott: Ichiro has been a replacement level player this season, yet the Yankees are still playing him every day. Do you think the organization remains committed to him in RF, or will they look to cut his playing time/upgrade the position? If so, do you think it will be internally or on the trade market? If the Mariners trade Mike Morse to the Yankees to replace Ichiro, I may die of laughter.
Tanya: With Curtis Granderson recovering from his second broken bone of the season and Vernon Wells crashing back to Earth at an alarming speed after his early-season success, the Yankees don't have a ton of options but to play Ichiro right now. Once Granderson is healthy, there will likely need to be an odd man out, and Ichiro probably gets to stay in the outfield full-time over Wells for his defensive capabilities. When Ichiro has gone into ugly slumps this year, he has been benched at times, briefly, so I do have some hope that the team isn't going to trot him out there every day, regardless. However, a two-year deal showed commitment to thinking that what he did after the trade last year was legitimate and that looks to have been a very foolish assumption right now.