Yankees finalize two-year, $13M contract with Ichiro Suzuki

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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.

Yasmani Grandal played himself out of NLCS Game 4

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Dodgers catcher Yasmani Grandal has not had a good postseason. Entering Monday night’s NLCS Game 3, he was batting .111/.238/.278 in 21 trips to the plate across the NLDS and the first two games of the NLCS.

Defense has also been an issue for Grandal. In Game 1 of the NLCS, Grandal was on the hook for two passed balls. In the sixth inning of Game 3 Monday night, he couldn’t corral a curve in the dirt, which allowed Travis Shaw to score the Brewers’ second run of the night. Starter Walker Buehler was charged with a wild pitch. In the eighth, with Ryan Braun on first base and Shaw at the plate, Grandal again couldn’t corral a pitch in the dirt, allowing Braun to move to second base. Fortunately for the Dodgers, Alex Wood was able to escape the inning with no damage.

Manager Dave Roberts said that Austin Barnes, not Grandal, will start behind the plate for Game 4 on Tuesday night, Andy McCullough of the Los Angeles Times reports. That comes as no surprise at all. When Grandal struck out with the bases loaded in the ninth inning, Dodger fans regaled him with boos.

Barnes will be an upgrade defensively, but he’s lacking with the bat. He had an 0-for-3 performance in Game 2, though with an RBI, bringing his career slash line in the playoffs to .200/.281/.300 across 57 plate appearances. During the regular season, his career 100 adjusted OPS is a fair bit behind Grandal’s 115. Roberts is trading offense for defense in Game 4. Rich Hill will get the start opposite the Brewers’ Gio González.