Via Ken Rosenthal -
Ichiro Suzuki enjoyed playing for the New York Yankees so much, he likely will be back with them again.
The Yankees are showing strong interest in re-signing the free-agent outfielder, according to major league sources.
“They are all over him,” one source says. “That (a deal with Ichiro) will happen.”
Ichiro, 39, would join two other left-handed hitters in the Yankees’ outfield, Curtis Granderson and Brett Gardner.
The Yankees then would need a right-handed complement, presuming they do not trade Granderson, an idea the team is exploring, sources say.
The return of Ichiro would not preclude the Yankees from re-signing free agent Raul Ibanez, another left-handed hitter who likely would get most of his at-bats as a DH.
The team also is waiting to hear on its one-year, $12 million offer to Kevin Youkilis, a right-handed hitter who would play third base while Alex Rodriguez recovers from surgery on his left hip.
As for Josh Hamilton, the best free-agent hitter on the market, the Yankees are “kicking the tires,” according to a source, but at this point do not appear to be a serious bidder.
I think Ichiro, if he plays full-time next season, will have an OPS+ of 95 or less. Obviously, the Yankees see something else.