Leaked notes from Houston Astros executives show that the New York Yankees were trying to work out a deal that would have sent Ichiro Suzuki to The Lone Star state, amongst other deals the Astros were exploring with various Major League Baseball teams.
The notes can be found on the website AnonBin, which detail all the different discussions the Astros' front office was involved in over the course of 10 months (Click here and here to view the actual notes).
According to those notes, The Yanks were willing to deal Suzuki to Houston and eat $4.5 million of his $6.5 million contract in order to complete the deal. If he wasn't aware of it already, Suzuki can't be happy that New York was ready to banish him to the black hole of baseball organizations.
Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports confirms that the notes are indeed authentic, which were originally reported on by another website, Deadspin:
Multiple executives confirm authenticity of trade talks hacked from Astros computer. Docs: and
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) June 30, 2014
Deadspin listed some of the more interesting proposals written about in the leaked information:
The Miami Marlins seem to have been willing to trade Giancarlo Stanton for prospects Carlos Correa and George Springer. Granting that Correa is an absolute stud, that Springer has hit fabulously well since his callup earlier this year, and that they're under team control for years while Stanton is starting to get expensive, you still wonder if the Astros will end up kicking themselves over that one. Stanton has the 11th-highest isolated power in major league history for anyone with at least 1,000 at-bats, and is a Gold Glove-caliber outfielder as well; he's a generational talent, the kind you can't really overpay for. (Another way to look at this, of course, is that the embarrassing Marlins franchise was yet again willing to trade away an irreplaceable player so as to pocket some of its dole money.)
While vigorously shopping adequate pitcher Bud Norris last summer, the Astros came off a bit like that one guy in your fantasy league, asking after every team's top young players as if there were a real chance that, say, the Boston Red Sox were going to trade Xander Bogaerts for an okayish No. 3 starter. Nothing ventured, nothing gained and all that, but you wonder if the ultimately unimpressive return they got for Norris from the Baltimore Orioles had to do with them overplaying their hand a bit, especially as the flopsweating Pittsburgh Pirates seem to have been willing to discuss a variety of pretty good prospects.
It'll be interesting to see if Ichiro is asked a question about this. It will certainly make for an awkward situation for the Yanks' outfielder to handle, but it's doubtful he'll even address it as he has always handled himself professionally.
There was plenty of Ichiro trade speculation during the offseason and while it would have been downright cruel to ship Ichiro to Houston, Yankees fans likely would not have had a problem with it.
It turns out not trading Ichiro was a good idea after all. The 40-year-old has stayed healthy throughout 2014 and is hitting to a .297 average with 10 RBI. His ability to play the outfield has been huge with Carlos Beltran unable to play defense as a result of an ongoing elbow issue.
From just a baseball fan perspective, this story couldn't be more fascinating. It gives a detailed look into the minds and conversations between teams and their executives, as well as an even more surreal look into how outlandish some teams' ideas are in the trade market.
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