Barry Bonds says Ichiro could win the Home Run Derby if he wanted to

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Marlins outfielder Ichiro Suzuki has reached double-digits in home runs only three times in his career, and hasn’t done it since 2009 when he was 35 years old. Yet Marlins hitting coach Barry Bonds is adamant that Ichiro could win the Home Run Derby if he wanted to.

Deadspin directed readers to this YouTube video featuring an interview of Bonds. He said:

He hits more home runs than anyone in batting practice. Every day. I told him, I had a talk with him the other day. I said, “You gotta stop hitting all these home runs.” He says, “Why?” I said, “Because you’re wasting them in practice. We want you to hit a home run in a game.” I think he hits all his home runs in batting practice so he can get all his hits [in games].

[On Ichiro in the Home Run Derby]

I think he’d win. Easy. Hands down. That’s just his style. He likes to get the bat head through the zone. He likes that comfort zone. That’s how he plans himself and he knows — there’s very rare hitters that know what they want to do and he’s one of those guys who knows exactly what he’s doing.

That Ichiro could be a power hitter if he wanted to isn’t a new assertion. It’s been part of his mythology since he came into the league. As you can see in the above clip, it doesn’t seem to take much effort at all for Ichiro to plant a homer 25 rows deep in right field. Bonds’ claim isn’t that outrageous.

Brian Cashman signs 4-year contract to remain Yankees GM

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SAN DIEGO — Brian Cashman has signed a four-year contract to remain the New York Yankees Senior Vice President and General Manager. The announcement was made during the first day of baseball’s Winter Meetings.

Cashman, New York’s GM since 1998, had been working on a handshake agreement since early November, when his five-year contract expired.

The Yankees were swept by four games in the AL Championship Series and haven’t reached the World Series since winning in 2009. It is the franchise’s longest title drought since an 18-year gap between 1978-96.

Cashman’s main goal during the offseason is trying to re-sign AL MVP Aaron Judge.

Judge hit an American League-record 62 homers this season with a .311 batting average and 131 RBIs. He turned down the Yankees’ offer on the eve of opening day of a seven-year contract that would have paid $213.5 million from 2023-29.

While Judge remains on the market, Cashman was able to re-sign Anthony Rizzo on Nov. 15 to a two-year contract worth $40 million after turning down a $16 million player option.

Cashman has been the Yankees general manager since 1998. He has been with the organization since 1986, when he was a 19-year old intern in the scouting department. In his 25 seasons as GM, the Yankees have reached the postseason 21 times, including four World Series championships and six American League titles.