Could Ichiro Suzuki land on the New York Mets next season?
Ichiro Suzuki is not young anymore but he's still very capable of pulling together a good season. He's already played in more than 30 games this season and has a batting average just over .260. This is one of his worst batting averages ever and over the last couple of seasons his production has been decreasing but is it possible that the Mets could offer him a contract for the 2016 season to play off the bench?
He's only making 2 million this year with the Marlins and as he ages, his price tag should only go down. It's very possible that next season Ichiro could be landed for a 1 year deal that ranges between 750,000 and 1.5 million dollars unless he pulls together a few prologed streaks. Right now, when we look at both John Mayberry Jr and Kirk Nieuwenhuis as outfielers coming off the bench, Ichiro now seems a good fit as they are both hitting in the hundreds. Look at Mayberry whose batting average is less than half of Ichiros batting average.
Both players have a triple and a home run while Ichiro has 5 more walks, and 7 more RBI's. Ichiro may be 10 years older than Mayberry but could offer a lot more at a similar price. He's getting old and could just as easily retire, but I'm getting the idea that Ichiro would rather play an extra year to reach 3000 hits and wouldn't mind coming off the bench and could potentialy be a huge bat off the bench when you compare both production and price so far in 2015.
Is it possible though? I think it is, unless Mayberry starts playing like he did in 2011, the Mets will need to replace him, and even though the Mets could reach from within, having Ichiro either as a 4th outfielder or further back sounds like it could lead to a promising outcome.
Now we could look beyond the stats at what Ichiro could bring to the Mets, and that would be in the forum of publicity and maybe even fans. Not only does he have a long and very grand career and is known all over the baseball world, but Ichiro also has a few fan in New York from the time he played in the Bronx. Mix a well established career alongside the hunt for 3000 hits, and you have yourself a nice media scoop.
Fans of Ichiro, Japanese baseball fans in general, and fans of seeing history in the making would flock to Citi Field to see him. Having such a presence on the team could greatly increase both ticket sales and merchandise which would create an endless loop of possibilties for the Mets throughout the year. It could mean even more if Ichiro does in fact hit 3000 hits and decides to end his guaranteed Hall of Fame career that year.
It's really a win win win situation for the Mets to sign Ichiro next season. Low price plus upgraded stats plus massive publicty equal a very very good signing.