Seattle Mariners right fielder Ichiro Suzuki has been traded to the New York Yankees.
The Yankees acquired Ichiro for RHPs D.J. Mitchell & Danny Farquhar, MLB.com reported Monday. Cash considerations are also included in the deal.
Mitchell (40-man) and Farquhar (non-40-man) will both report to AAA Tacoma. The Mariners 40-man roster remains full at 40.
At a Monday press conference, Mariners CEOHoward Lincoln said several weeks ago, Ichiro asked for a trade and the Mariners began investigating the prospect.
"Ichiro knows that the club is building for the future, and he felt that what was best for the team was to be traded to another club and give our younger players an opportunity to develop," he said.
“He deserves to play for a contending team before the end of his magnificent career,” Lincoln said.
At the Monday press conference, Ichiro expressed his gratitude to the fans who stuck with him thoughout his years with the Mariners.
"Thank you for the last 11 1/2 years," he said via an enterpreter.
"When I think about the last 11 1/2 years ... and when I imagined taking off the Mariners uniform I was overcome with sadness. It has made this a very difficult decision to make," he said.
He also said it's been hard to contain his excitement at the prospect of going from the team with the most losses to the team with the most wins.
Ichiro said he out of respect for the Yankees, he will not keep the Number 51, which belonged to Yankees legend Bernie Williams but is not retired. He
Ichiro, 38, joined the Mariners in 2001. He was named Rookie of the Year and American League MVP that year.
Ichiro set a major league record with over 200 hits in each of his first 10 seasons, batting over .300 each year and winning the American League MVP as a rookie. But in 2011, he amassed 184 hits, batting .272.
Ichiro had spent his whole big league career with Seattle. The 10-time All-Star and 10-time Gold Glove winner is batting .261 with four home runs, 28 RBIs and 15 stolen bases this year.
He is a career .322 hitter and former AL MVP. He has never played in the World Series and now joins the team with the best record in the majors.