Report: Ichiro Suzuki Traded to Yankees, Bolsters Case for AL East Crown

Ichiro Suzuki has been one of the best players in all of baseball for over a decade. And now the Japanese superstar appears headed for the winning tradition of the New York Yankees.

Suzuki has been dealt to the Yankees in exchange for a pair of relievers, according to Jack Curry, who covers the Yankees for YES. The relievers in the deal, D.J. Mitchell and Danny Farquhar, are both minor league prospects with minimal MLB experience. The Yankees will also receive cash to pay for the rest of Ichiro's $17 million salary in the deal.

The addition should help shore up a maligned Yankees outfield, which currently features a platoon of Raul Ibanez and Andruw Jones starting in left field in place of the injured Brett Gardner. When he ultimately joins the roster, Ichiro will likely be slotted in his normal right field spot while Nick Swisher will head over to man left field.

The 38-year-old Ichiro has posted career-worst numbers this season, batting just .261 with only 15 steals. Those numbers, although an improvement over the Yankees current outfield production, pale in comparison to Suzuki's career averages of .322 at the plate and better than 38 steals per season.

Seattle's return in the deal, meanwhile, is modest but enticing. Mitchell and Farquhar were both 10th round selections in the 2008 MLB draft, and each player has progressed steadily through the minors. Mitchell worked his way through the Yankees farm system and posted a 3.86 ERA in 4.2 innings in New York this season. Farquhar, who was picked up on waivers by the Yankees on June 26, also has major league experience, allowing four runs over 2 innings of work with the Blue Jays in 2011. He has not seen any time at the big league level in 2012.

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