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Dear Ichiro


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66 replies to this topic

#41
Lonnie

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I deleted the last two comments in this thread because things were just starting to get stupid. Anymore and the thread gets closed. If this "conversation" spills over into other threads heads will roll.
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#42
DocMilo

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I deleted the last two comments in this thread because things were just starting to get stupid. Anymore and the thread gets closed. If this "conversation" spills over into other threads heads will roll.

What two comments?
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#43
Shaggy

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What two comments?


One of the comments deleted was mine. If you want to know what it was about PM me. I just responded in a very politically incorrect manner.

Edited by Shaggy, 08 March 2012 - 05:21 PM.

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#44
DocMilo

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Oh, I was just making a joke. Trying to lighten things up. No real unterest except in Mr. Ichiro having a good enough season to help the team out, but not necessarily good enough for an extension.
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#45
muddyfrogwater

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He is not retiring anytime soon. Were stuck with him for 3-4 years

Hey, Phred leave some meat on his bones for the rest of us vultures. You're going to pick him dry. Here this will soothe your soul.
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I'm not here to judge. I'm just pointing out all of the mistakes you're making.


#46
Shaggy

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Oh, I was just making a joke. Trying to lighten things up. No real unterest except in Mr. Ichiro having a good enough season to help the team out, but not necessarily good enough for an extension.


I appreciate you trying to lighten things up. Generally, I try to laugh things off but some times I can't (and won't) ignore things by laughing them off. There are certain things that you've got to call em' like you see em. Lonnie was correct though, due to the nature of the comment, it needed removed. It was only going to spiral into a bigger storm.

Personally, I hope Ichiro has a great year and has a baseball season that I can enjoy (for a start, he needs to lighten up in the dug out). But I also hope he retires, regardless of the year he has. I just want the M's to win and I hope Ichiro decides to contribute to the "team" rather than personal records.
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#47
xarmyguy78

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you forgot the one thing ichiro has that even jeter, bernie, posoda, rivera etc don't/didn't have. japanese owner that doesn't care about winning, just cares about taking care of the japanese players he likes (ichiro, kaz, johjina) regardless of performance. the yankees owners move on (berniem posada) when players are done, yamauchi extends them


Phred... Would you please just let the Yamachi comments go already. There is ZERO evidence that Yamachi has anything to do with the business dealings of this club any longer
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#48
Shaggy

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Phred... Would you please just let the Yamachi comments go already. There is ZERO evidence that Yamachi has anything to do with the business dealings of this club any longer

This article was written in 2004. Has anything, other than Yamauchi's age changed since then?

The Mariners quietly became 100 percent locally owned this summer when Japanese billionaire Hiroshi Yamauchi, doing some estate planning, sold his shares in the Seattle baseball franchise to Redmond-based Nintendo of America (NOA).

But he remains the club's titular head.

"His role remains unchanged, and I still deal with him on a regular basis," Howard Lincoln, Mariners CEO and Nintendo's representative on the club's board of directors, said last night by phone. "This is something he's had in mind from the beginning of his ownership.

"It's really no substantive change in our operation."


Like or dislike Phred's oft times grenade throwing style of posts, he does make a point regarding Mr. Yamauchi still being the one calling the shots regarding Japanese players.
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#49
phredmojo

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Phred... Would you please just let the Yamachi comments go already. There is ZERO evidence that Yamachi has anything to do with the business dealings of this club any longer



this is from howards own mouth


Q: Speaking of control, what about the extension of Kenji Johjima's contract? From a purely baseball perspective, three years at $24 million made no sense, based on a catcher's age (32) alone. Was this solely the call of Hiroshi Yamauchi?

A: I've read a lot about this "mystery owner in Kyoto" who interferes with respect to Japanese players. Let me set the record straight. Mr. Yamauchi has been a very passive, patient majority owner of the Mariners. But for him, we wouldn't be talking here today because the Mariners would be somewhere else.

He has involved himself with three Japanese players -- Kazuhiro Sasaki, Ichiro Suzuki and Kenji. Mr. Yamauchi suggested we consider signing Sasaki as a free agent. Nobody in our baseball operations, including Gillick and Piniella, thought it was a good idea. All of them resisted. We signed him, and he was our closer in 2000 and 2001. By any measure, he had a very successful run.

The second time Mr. Yamauchi "interfered," it was with Ichiro. There's no question we would have never signed Ichiro except for Yamauchi. Gillick and Piniella and all our baseball people were against it. They were aghast when we put $13.1 million (posting fee) on the table to sign him. They were convinced Ichiro would fail.

Far as I can tell, Mr. Yamauchi was batting 1.000. As far as Johjima, Mr. Yamauchi wants him to finish his career as a Mariner. Johjima's agent approached Chuck at the beginning of the season. That extension was put together. I can assure you that Bill did not think that was a good idea. But Johjima did pretty well here his first two years, both offensively and defensively. This year he had a miserable season. He has yet to perform under the new contract. There's no way to tell right now whether he will be good, bad or indifferent. But my money is on Yamauchi because he's got a pretty good batting average.

Those are the three times in 17 seasons that the majority owner of the Mariners has "interfered." I would put his record up against any MLB owner, all of whom interfere to some extent. I think he has been remarkably prescient in the players he has focused on.

Q: The contract extensions that were given seemed above market for their talents. There is a belief Yamauchi is willing to overpay for "favored sons" regardless of consequence to the payroll and team morale. True?



A: He's Japanese, and his focus is on Japanese players........................................







Q: Does Yamauchi feel an urgency to win immediately every year for Ichiro's sake, meaning an emphasis on the expensive but quick fix of veteran free agents as opposed to a slower rebuild with younger players?

A: No. He's never communicated anything like that to me. In my 17 years as his representative, he's never gotten into a discussion like that. He's told me repeatedly: "I leave this in your hands."

Q: Will the new GM be able to trade Ichiro or Johjima if it's in the club's best interests?

A: Certainly I'm willing to listen to anything. But as a practical matter, I have a pretty good idea of Mr. Yamauchi's view of these Japanese players. In the case of Ichiro, what we have enjoyed from Ichiro the last eight years in terms of performance means someone would have to have their head screwed on wrong to decide the best way to fix the Mariners was to get rid of their franchise player.

That doesn't make sense, just like Derek Jeter isn't going anywhere under the direction of (Yankees GM) Brian Cashman without taking it to the Steinbrenners. I think it's the same for Johjima.

http://www.seattlepi...6731.php#page-1


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RIP Ichidman51............say hello to wildman and Ray_Oyler_fan...you will be missed my friend

#50
tradedollarnut

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Irrefutably owned...straight from the horse's mouth
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#51
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I don't doubt that Yamouchi has a lot of say in the signing of Japanese players and that if his historical pattern holds true, Ichiro will be extended. Unless, of course, they really are positioning the club for sale, in which case all those types of favortism games will become irrelevant. At that point, it'll be all about ROI and saddling a club with a legacy contract will hurt that.

I tend to think that if Ichiro was going to be automatically extended, it would have been done by now. The fact that he wasn't signed and that Jack is going to take him through the season with an expiring contract is somewhat telling.
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You can't sit on a lead and run a few plays into the line and just kill the clock. You've got to throw the ball over the goddamn plate and give the other man his chance. That's why baseball is the greatest game of them all. ~Earl Weaver

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#52
xarmyguy78

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this is from howards own mouth
http://www.seattlepi...6731.php#page-1

Seriously, you are going to quote an article from 4 years ago from the likes of Art Thiel?
Times are changing, change with them
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#53
phredmojo

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What has changed except the gm and manager. Nothing. Go ahead and ignore lincolns words if you want
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RIP Ichidman51............say hello to wildman and Ray_Oyler_fan...you will be missed my friend

#54
Shaggy

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Seriously, you are going to quote an article from 4 years ago from the likes of Art Thiel?
Times are changing, change with them


I apologize about not adding a link to the article I quoted. But Lincoln said the same thing about Yamauchi in 2004 and is essentially saying the same thing in 2008. It appears that in that span of time, things did not change. Has their been a public statement suggesting he is NOT in control of the bigger decisions in the club? The burden of proof is on you xarmy since you're the one suggesting that Yamauchi won't be a part of the decision to keep Ichiro around. From what I've read, the only reason Yamauchi turned over his shares to Ninendo in 04' was to restructure his estate but it didn't mean he relinquished his authority to anyone else.

On a side note, it was a smart move to plan ahead, had he died before he turned the ownership over, the Mariners could have ended up like the Dodgers.
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#55
wufners

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One difference is Yamauchi is now in his mid-80s and lost half a billion dollars last year. He may have other stuff on his mind. Especially since having Japanese players in the mlb isn't as unique as it was a few years ago and Ichiro's performance may no longer being a point of pride.

Doesn't mean that if Ichiro's has a good year Yamauchi won't step in and say extend him. But if Ichiro struggles or is mediocre, I don't see that happening. And for the first time since Gillick in the early 2000s, the Mariners seem to be letting their GM lead the team rather than group think. Giving a huge contract to an aging veteran who is no longer producing is counter to what Zdurencik is building. Again, doesn't guarantee someone won't step in and force his hand. I don't think Griffey returning last year was Z's call. But at this point I think Ichiro getting a big extension is unlikely.

If he has a decent season, then maybe he gets a 2 year deal with a mutual option on the second (or for a third) for around 22 million plus incentives. But that'll be once season is over and only if Ichiro shows he has something still to give.
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That's spelled: Zduriencik

#56
Vidya

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Also, no one is going to force Ichiro to sign a contract if he can no longer perform to his own standards. Ichiro believes he can play closer to his career numbers than his 2011 numbers. I can't imagine him wanting to return if his 2012 numbers are worse than his 2011 numbers. In Ichiro's mind right now it is just a question of one year or maybe three. It wouldn't be that hard to calculate the numbers based on those assumptions. I'm just too busy right now.

Edited by Vidya, 09 March 2012 - 01:31 PM.

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My 2014 AAP's:
James Jones, Rainiers outfielder extraordinaire.

Ji-Man Choi, Rainiers slugging first baseman.

Carson Smith, Rainiers bullpen.

Logan Kensing, Rainiers bullpen.

Jesus Montero, trimmed down and ready to go.

Sorry, Ji-Man, but really? Maybe when you get off the restricted list, Montero will have been promoted. 

Carson is doing a fine job, but Logan has been dominant and deserves recognition.


#57
xarmyguy78

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The burden of proof is on you xarmy since you're the one suggesting that Yamauchi won't be a part of the decision to keep Ichiro around.

I know I've seen it talked about in at least one source, but since I am in the process of packing for my vacation to AZ I do not have time to dig it up
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#58
Shaggy

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I know I've seen it talked about in at least one source, but since I am in the process of packing for my vacation to AZ I do not have time to dig it up


xarmyguy you've got REAL priorities and I am jealous as all get out. Go have a ton of fun at Spring training.
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#59
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I agree, in general and in particular, to Sandy's helpful analysis. Just a couple of points in response:

1. Ichiro should get some credit for being unselfish in agreeing to move to the 3 hole when it is clear that the move will make it harder for him to maximize his hit total and batting average, regardless of whether or not his new swing/stance succeeds. Add to that his accepting not to negotiate a contract extension this past offseason, it runs counter to the view that Ichiro is all about himself and 3000 hits. On the contrary, at a time when his career hangs in the balance, he has at least so far not taken such a course.

2. I agree that a significant BABIP recovery, not just a bounceback, is highly unlikely in 2012, with one caveat: the adjustment in Ichiro's new swing to reduce its loop is IMHO PRECISELY the swing change that can address the Achilles heel of Ichiro's hitting style ever since he arrived in Seattle. The other adjustments don't matter to me--if he can significantly reduce the loop in his swing, I see a chance that Ichiro can increase his bat quickness from 2011 and hit .290-.305 for a couple of years. (In the world of the superoptimist this increased bat quickness would allow him to wait longer on pitches, increase his walk rate, and permit loading up in favorable counts and boosting his power production.) It is reasonable to give him at least four months this season before reaching a verdict on the success of the new swing/stance, especially since it represents so many changes that there almost certainly will be adjustments on adjustments in season.

One view.

Edited by Bandwagon Fan, 10 March 2012 - 08:00 AM.

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#60
glmuskie

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Anyone willing to take bets on Kawasaki NOT making the team at this point? He's been very good so far. If the M's were thinking of breaking camp without him, I wouldn't doubt that Yamauchi would exert his influence to change their minds.

My only problem with Kawasaki is that if you have him, Figgins, and Ichiro all in the lineup at the same time. That's too much of your lineup with zero power, and we know what sort of offense that leads to.
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