Suzuki announced his retirement from baseball following Thursday's 5-4 victory over the Athletics in 12 innings.
Suzuki ended his career with a pair of starts in his home country of Japan and received a standing ovation when he checked out of Thursday's game in the bottom of the eighth inning. The 45-year-old went 0-for-5 with a walk in his two games in Tokyo, but he'll retire with 3,089 career hits over his 19-year MLB career, placing him 23rd in league history. Including his total from his nine-year career in Japan prior to joining the Mariners in 2001, Suzuki recorded 4,367 hits as a professional.
Manager Scott Servais said that Suzuki would play in Thursday's game against the Athletics, but wouldn't commit to the outfielder drawing a second straight start, Ryan Divish of The Seattle Times reports.
With the Mariners and Athletics opening the MLB season in Suzuki's home country of Japan, the 45-year-old was rewarded with the start in right field. Batting out of the No. 9 spot, Suzuki popped out in his first plate appearance and a drew a walk in his second before substituting out of the game in the bottom of the fourth. Even if he doesn't start Thursday, he'll likely get at least one at-bat, which could very well represent his last action in the majors. The Mariners haven't indicated whether they plan on carrying Suzuki on the roster once the team resumes regular-season play in North America next week.
Suzuki had his contract selected from Triple-A Tacoma.
As expected, Suzuki will join the Mariners ahead of the team's season-opening series against the Athletics in Tokyo. The veteran outfielder will be included in the starting lineup for Seattle's regular-season opener Wednesday, and it wouldn't be surprising to see him start Thursday's game as well. That said, Suzuki's future with the Mariners beyond the club's two-game series in his native Japan remains murky.
Mariners manager Scott Servais said that Suzuki will be included in the starting lineup for the club's regular-season opener March 20 against the Athletics in Tokyo, Ryan Divish of The Seattle Times reports.
From the moment Suzuki re-signed with the Mariners in January on a minor-league deal, it was always likely that he would join the big club for its two-game trip to his native Japan. There's a decent possibility that Suzuki starts both Wednesday and Thursday in his home country, but his future with the Mariners beyond this week is more questionable. General manager Jerry Dipoto has previously stated that Suzuki will be given a fair chance to compete for his place on the roster once the club returns to North America, but there might not be much incentive for a rebuilding organization to keep a spot open for a 45-year-old outfielder.
Suzuki (foot) is batting seventh and starting in left field for Friday's spring training game against the Athletics, Greg Johns of MLB.com reports.
Suzuki was hit on the left foot by a pitch during live batting practice earlier this week, but his quick return to action is no surprise given an X-ray revealed no structural damage. The veteran outfielder is expected to travel with the Mariners for the two-game, season-opening series in Japan against the Athletics, though his longer-term status on the 25-man roster is more difficult to pin down.
An X-ray on Suzuki's left foot revealed no structural damage, Greg Johns of MLB.com reports.
Ichiro was hit by a Felix Hernandez pitch during live batting practice earlier in the week, but tests came back clean and he's expected to return to workouts in a day or two. The plan is for the veteran outfielder to travel with the Mariners to Japan for their season-opening, two-game series against the A's, though his status beyond then remains up in the air as Seattle will have to pare down its roster to 25 men prior to the team's home opener against the Red Sox on March 28.
Suzuki agreed Wednesday with the Mariners on a minor-league contract, Bob Nightengale of USA Today reports. The deal is worth $750,000 at the major-league level.
General manager Jerry Dipoto hinted on multiple occasions earlier in the offseason that Suzuki would resume his playing career with the Mariners in 2019 after he previously worked in the organization's front office from May onward last season. With Suzuki now officially set to put pen to paper on a new deal, he'll get the opportunity to audition for a reserve outfield role with Seattle in spring training. At the very least, it's expected that Suzuki will be a part of the 28-man roster the Mariners will be allotted for their season-opening, two-game series in Japan, the 45-year-old's home country. The Mariners will then pare their roster down to 25 men prior to the home opener March 28 against the Red Sox. Suzuki may need to prove in spring training and the Japan games that he's still a viable MLB player in order to stick around with the big club on a more permanent basis.
General manager Jerry DiPoto confirmed that Suzuki would be a member of the Mariners' 28-man roster for its two-game, season-opening series with the Astros on March 20 and 21, Emily Caron of Sports Illustrated reports.
Currently a free agent, Suzuki is expected to re-sign with Seattle on a minor-league deal and take part in big-league spring training. While the games in Tokyo will count toward the standings for both Seattle and Houston, both squads will be afforded three extra players on their active rosters for those contests, which occur a week before the rest of the majors begins its regular season. It most likely will amount to a final sendoff for Suzuki in his home country, but DiPoto left the door open for the 45-year-old to earn his way onto the 25-man roster once the Mariners resume play stateside March 28 against Boston. Suzuki played just 15 games at the major-league level in 2018 before moving into a front-office role with the Mariners for the rest of the season in early May.
General manager Jerry Dipoto said Suzuki will be on Seattle's Opening Day roster when the team kicks off its season against the A's in Tokyo, assuming he's healthy, Greg Johns of MLB.com reports. "I would stop short of guaranteeing it, because we have to make sure he's healthy. But he'll be on our roster," Dipoto said. "We feel strongly that it's the right thing to do for our franchise and the right thing to do for the NPB and believe it's the right thing to do for Ichiro. What happens thereafter remains to be seen."
Suzuki opened the 2018 season with the Mariners, but ultimately transitioned into a front-office role in May following a slow start to the campaign (.205/.255/.205 through 15 games). It sounds like Suzuki will rejoin the Mariners one last time for the team's two-game set in his native Japan, as both teams will be allowed to carry 28 players for the season-opening series. The veteran outfielder will likely call it quits when Seattle returns stateside and shifts back to a traditional 25-man roster, though nothing has been confirmed at this point. It will be a well-deserved sendoff for the Japanese legend, who hit a combined .322/.373/.434 with 4,367 hits, 235 homers and 708 stolen bases across 27 seasons in the majors and Japan.
Suzuki will relinquish his active roster spot to be a special assistant to the chairman for the Mariners for the remainder of the season.
This announcement came out of nowhere, though it makes some sense given the limited playing time the Japanese legend received since Ben Gamel returned to action. Suzuki hit .205 with five runs scored in 47 plate appearances this season. It's unclear if this is a full retirement, but he certainly has produced an impressive career if he does decide to call it quits for good.
Suzuki went 2-for-3 with a pair of walks in Sunday's loss to the Rangers.
It was Suzuki's first start in five games, as he's transitioned to a reserve role with the return of Ben Gamel. Suzuki was ever much of a power hitter, but at this point, the 44-year-old has become purely a singles hitter: All of his hits this year have been one-baggers.
Suzuki is not in the lineup Monday against the Astros, Ryan Divish of The Seattle Times reports.
With the Mariners facing the left-handed Dallas Keuchel, Suzuki will head to the bench as the team looks to get another righty in the lineup. Guillermo Heredia will start in left field and hit seventh while Suzuki heads to the bench.
Suzuki is not in the lineup Sunday against the A's, Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports.
Suzuki will head to the bench after going a combined 1-for-7 in his past two starts. Guillermo Heredia takes over in left field, batting seventh.
Suzuki is not in the lineup against the Royals on Wednesday, Shannon Drayer of MyNorthwest.com reports.
Suzuki will remain on the bench for the second consecutive outing as Guillermo Heredia receives another start in left field. With Ben Gamel (oblique) nearing activation, it's expected that Suzuki will fully transition to a reserve role.
Suzuki is not in the lineup for Tuesday's game against the Royals, Shannon Drayer of 710 ESPN Seattle reports.
Suzuki is 5-for-22 so far this season, with no extra base hits or walks, giving him a .227/.227/.227 line. The 44-year-old has still managed to get into seven of Seattle's opening eight games, though he'll have to pick up his performance level if he's to keep playing regularly. Guillermo Heredia will play left field in his place Tuesday.
Suzuki is not in the lineup Tuesday against the Giants, Ryan Divish of The Seattle Times reports.
Suzuki is 2-for-9 (.222) through the first three games of the season, but he'll head to the bench with lefty Ty Blach slated to pitch for San Francisco. Guillermo Heredia will fill the void in left field for the evening.
Suzuki went 2-for-4 with a run in Saturday's 6-5 loss to the Indians.
The ageless wonder had gone 0-for-2 in his season debut Thursday while returning from a calf injury, but he looked much more like himself in Saturday's defeat. In addition to his pair of singles -- one of the infield variety -- Suzuki also made a jaw-dropping leaping catch in left field on a blast off the bat of Jose Ramirez in the third. His age is likely to limit his playing time to an extent this season, but Saturday's effort substantiated that he's still able to bring plenty to the table at age 44.
Suzuki (calf) will start and hit ninth Thursday against the Indians, Corey Brock of The Athletic reports.
Suzuki's calf felt fine following a workout Wednesday, clearing the way for him to pick up the Opening Day start. The 44-year-old is expected to be the Mariners' primary option in left field until Ben Gamel (oblique) is healthy, though his days as a viable fantasy asset appear to be behind him.
Manager Scott Servais said Suzuki (calf) is still not 100 percent, Greg Johns of MLB.com reports.
Suzuki was able to play in Tuesday's spring game against the Rockies, but it's still unclear if he'll be ready to go by Opening Day on Thursday. The Mariners are expected to make a decision regarding his status following his scheduled workout Wednesday.
Suzuki (calf) is in the lineup for Tuesday's game against the Rockies, Greg Johns of MLB.com reports.
Suzuki has been battling a calf issue since mid-March but appears to be ready to go for Opening Day. He's expected to be the Mariners' primary left fielder until Ben Gamel (oblique) returns from the disabled list. Little remains of the speed which once made him a lock for 30 or more steals per season, leaving him with little to offer fantasy owners other than a mediocre batting average.
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