Off Base: Ripple effects of the Ichiro trade


The Mariners and Yankees stunned their fans Monday when Seattle traded Ichiro Suzuki to New York. What does the future hold for the aging future Hall of Famer? Will he finally get a World Series ring? Will the Mariners ever get back to the postseason? Off Base has the inside skinny …

July 23: Asked what it's like to be traded from the last-place Mariners, who have never played in a World Series and haven't been to the postseason in 11 years, to the first-place Yankees, who have played in 40 World Series and missed the postseason only once in the past 17 years, Ichiro declares, "Today … I consider myself … the luckiest man … on the face of the earth."

July 25: After homering to lead the hated Yankees to a three-game sweep of the Mariners, Ichiro tells reporters how wonderful it is to play for a team that adds quality players at the trade deadline rather than ignoring obvious needs to save a little money, as Mariners CEO Howard Lincoln did in 2001 and 2002 and 2003. Lincoln angrily responds to the criticism by vacating Ichiro's 12 annual bobblehead dolls in Seattle.

July 26: Seattle's tax base takes a crippling hit when the Japanese press corps that has covered Ichiro for the past 12 years relocates to New York City.

July 27: New York fans welcome Ichiro to Yankee Stadium by loudly chanting his name during the traditional roll call at the start of the game, giving him a standing ovation for his first at-bat and then booing him repeatedly after he attempts to bunt for a hit with two out and a runner on second base in a 5-2 loss to the Red Sox.

July 29: New Yorkers cheer Ichiro after he swings away to beat the Red Sox with a dramatic, ninth-inning walk-off nine-hop infield single just past Boston closer Alfredo Aceves.

• Click here to read Jim Caple's Off Base column in its entirety