A source told ESPN New York’s Wallace Matthews this afternoon that the Yankees were closing in on an agreement with Ichiro Suzuki but not quite there.
Now the two sides have fully closed the gap.
According to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports, the Yankees and Ichiro officially inked a two-year, $13 million contract on Wednesday evening. It’s only pending a physical, which should go smoothly.
Ichiro batted .322/.340/.454 with five home runs, 27 RBI and 14 stolen bases in 67 games this past season for New York after coming over in a late-July trade from the Mariners. He’s a .322/.365/.419 career hitter in the major leagues.
The 39-year-old will start in right field and bat primarily at leadoff for the Bombers in 2013.
The ALCS had a weird play in Game 4 on Tuesday night, but Game 4 of the NLCS did as well. This one involved Cubs outfielder Albert Almora, Jr. and his attempt to spark a rally in the bottom of the ninth inning against Dodgers reliever Ross Stripling.
After Alex Avila singled, Almora ripped a double to left field, past a diving Enrique Hernandez. The ball rolled to the ivy in front of the wall. Most outfielders there would’ve put their hands up, which would have alerted the umpires to call an immediate ground-rule double. Hernandez didn’t, instead fishing the ball out and firing it back into the infield. Avila had stopped at third base, but Almora kept running. Much to his surprise, he pulled up into third base to see his teammate standing there, resigned to his fate as a dead duck. Third baseman Justin Turner applied the tag on Almora for what he thought was the first out of the inning.
Almora, however, was then sent back to second base after the umpires correctly called a ground-rule double.
Unfortunately for the Cubs, the lucky break didn’t help as closer Kenley Jansen came in and took care of business, retiring all three batters he faced without letting an inherited runner score. The Dodgers won 6-1 and now lead the NLCS three games to none. They’ll try to punch their ticket to the World Series on Wednesday.