The Atlanta Braves have a chance to get their leadoff hitter now that Ichiro Suzuki has been rumored to have lost his patience with the New York Yankees. Little by little he has seen them offer almost everybody a contract so far this offseason and conversations have stopped between the two parties.
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"At the beginning we talked a lot but since that time, zero," Ichiro's agent Tony Attanasio told Friday's New York Post.
They will no longer wait around for the Yanks and they have begun talking with other teams.
"As far as we are concerned we don't care what the Yankees do," said Attanasio.
This would be the perfect time for the Braves to snatch the still productive 39-year-old.
Don't look at his age, look at his production.
In 67 games wtih the Yankees he hit .322 smacked five homers and drove in 27 runs while stealing 14 bases. He doesn't strikeout, which would serve the Braves well since Dan Uggla and B.J. Upton will likely compete for the team lead in that department.
Think of the damage the Braves could do if they have Ichiro at the top of the lineup followed by a contact hitter like Martin Prado and either Jason Heyward or Freddie Freeman filling in the three hole for Chipper Jones.
Ichiro provides the speed on the pads, Prado has the contact to place him in scoring position and Heyward/Freeman have the power to bring him home.
Opponents would be at a disadvantage early on in games.
With Upton patrolling center and Heyward out in right field, Ichiro would fit in left field.
The Braves freed up some dough after trading Tommy Hanson on Friday, so they could probably use that money to acquire Ichiro in a one-year deal somewhere around $10-$12 million.
Ichiro and his agent said they would consider anything that sounds good. This is the Braves chance to fill in one of their greatest needs.