Jimmy Rollins, Raul Ibanez decline arbitration from Phillies

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As expected, shortstop Jimmy Rollins and outfielder Raul Ibanez have declined arbitration from the Phillies.

This according to MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki.

Rollins is in search of a five-year contract, so the decision on his part was a no-brainer. With Ibanez, it’s a bit trickier. He’s unlikely to score a significant deal on the open market this winter and accepting arbitration would have netted him a salary of nearly $14 million for 2012. But it’s quite clear that the Phillies and Ibanez had a handshake agreement in place.

The Phillies can now get one draft pick when Ibanez signs elsewhere and two more picks if Rollins leaves.

Ichiro wore a fake mustache to sneak into the Mariners’ dugout

Associated Press
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Ichiro Suzuki is now a Mariners employee and, as such, he’s not allowed to sit in the dugout during a game. That’s for coaches and players only.

He knows that, too. Indeed, on the day Ichiro announced his sorta-retirement, he talked about how it was going to be hard not to be down on the field with the other players. He even made a ridiculous joke about how, “[he] can’t say for certain that maybe [he] won’t put on a beard and glasses and be like Bobby Valentine and be in the dugout.”

In related news, this mysterious stranger was seen by an Associated Press photographer in the Mariners dugout during the first couple of innings of the M’s-Yankees game:

(AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)

No beard, but I guess that joke was not very ridiculous after all. Either way, by the end of the second inning — poof — he was gone.

Obviously, when something interesting like this happens you mustache an expert for their opinion on the matter. To that end, the Associated Press reached Bobby Valentine, who famously did the same thing after an ejection way back in 1999, for comment:

“He was perfect. I never would have known it was him.”

Valentine was suspended for two games and fined $5,000. I’m assuming Ichiro won’t get hit quite as hard given that he wasn’t defying an umpire’s authority, but even if he does have to pay a fine, he’ll likely do so willingly.