Suzuki adds a spark to Yankees
38-year-old outfielder hitting .302
The Yankees traded for Ichiro Suzuki one month ago, rolling the dice that the 10-time All-Star would catch a second wind with a move from the last-place Seattle Mariners to first-place New York.
Apparently, he has. The 38-year-old outfielder is hitting .302 in his first 29 games with the Yankees, hitting three home runs while driving in 13.
"He's played extremely well," manager Joe Girardi said. "He's added the speed element, defense, hit some pretty big home runs; we saw that the other night. I think he fits well in our clubhouse. I think that the guys enjoy having him, and I think he enjoys being here."
Suzuki was hitting .261 with four home runs and 28 RBI in 95 games with the Mariners at the time of the trade. Since joining the Yankees, he's improved in virtually every statistical category including on-base percentage (.288 with Seattle, .323 with New York) and slugging percentage (.353 to .469).
Suzuki has also provided solid defense for the Yankees, who have started him in right field 13 times, left field nine times and center field twice. He's even been the designated hitter once.
"I can always tell you I worried about him when we had to face him on the other side," Girardi said. "I can't tell you if he needed to be rejuvenated, but he's played well for us, I can tell you that."