When news broke around 6 p.m. (NY time) yesterday that the Yankees had acquired outfielder Ichiro Suzuki, the whole baseball world was left with mouths agape. Even the most die-hard Yankee fan couldn’t believe what he/she was hearing despite following the team’s every move on Twitter and other news outlets. There were no rumors or whispers prior to the trade; it just came out of nowhere.
That is because general manager Brian Cashman is a GD ninja.
How many times over his tenure have we heard that the team will stand pat — or they expect a quiet trade deadline — only to be blown away by some crazy transaction? Too many to count. BIG was right: bad boys do move in silence.
Cashman had to give up only minor leaguers D.J. Mitchell and Danny Farquhar in exchange for Ichiro and cash considerations. According to Mark Feinsand of the Daily News, the Yanks will only have to pay $2.2 million of the remaining ~$6 million Ichiro is owed this season.
Granted, Ichiro is 38, past his prime at the plate and will be a free agent at season’s end, but he does bring speed on the base paths and is an upgrade on defense with Gardner out for the year. I love this move. Of course we won’t know if it will work out in the long run, but acquiring a player of Ichiro’s caliber for next to nothing is a textbook Cashman move.
For what it’s worth, my favorite Cashman heist has to be the Nick Swisher deal. Cash took advantage of Ozzie Guillen’s hatred of Swish Dog and gave up just Wilson Betemit, Jeff Marquez and Jhonny Nunez (while also getting the forgettable Kanekoa Texeira). Classic.
Say what you want about some of his failed deals, but he has been a great GM for the Yanks. In Cash I Trust.