Ichiro willing to wait

The Yankees search for Nick Swisher's replacement started with Torii Hunter. Well, it sort of did. The Yankees discussed a one-year contract, but never actually made Hunter an offer. So Hunter went to Detroit for a two-year contract the Yankees were unlikely to ever extend. Hunter was unwilling to wait on the Yankees.

Ichiro Suzuki

Ichiro Suzuki

#31 RF
New York Yankees

2012 STATS

  • GM162
  • HR9

  • RBI55

  • R77

  • OBP.307

  • AVG.283

Now, Brian Cashman is working down his punch-list. This week, he may be able to get a deal done with Andy Pettitte. Pettitte has not officially decided that he is returning, though everyone thinks he is. Mariano Rivera has already made his intentions known, that he will pitch again at 43, but the Yankees and Rivera's agent, Fernando Cuza are presumably going back-and-forth, trying to figure out what is fair for the G.O.A.T of closers, who is coming off a severe knee injury.

In Cashman's perfect world, he will have those two pieces of business wrapped up prior to the Winter Meetings, which begin in earnest a week from Monday in Nashville.

While Hunter would not wait, Ichiro Suzuki apparently will see what the Yankees can offer before deciding what he will ultimately do.

"They are going after pitching first which is what the Yankees normally do," Ichiro's agent Tony Attanasio told the New York Post. “There has been a lot of interest [from teams], but he enjoyed playing for the Yankees so much it’s hard for him to say no to the Yankees. His preference is to stay there instead of going someplace else, but we will wait and see.

So Ichiro will see if the Yankees will make him their right fielder for 2013. This would give them an outfield of Brett Gardner, Curtis Granderson and Ichiro. With Ichiro in right and Gardner possibly moving to center with Granderson in left, they could be much better defensively. Still, there might be a team with a multi-year offer waiting for Ichiro. If there is, the Yankees may have to look elsewhere.