Ichiro, in the photo above, meets with hip hop artist Flo Rida, down on the field this afternoon during batting practice. Ichiro plays three different Flo Rida songs — In the Ayer, Jump and Sugar — as his intro music before each plate appearance. Flo Rida, whose real name is Tramar Dillard, actually mentions Ichiro by name in the Jump song.
“On the Jump record, with I have out now featuring Nelly Furtado, I was like ‘When I say Jump, you say I-chir-o!’,” Flo Rida said.
Listen to the song below.
The native of the Carol City projects in Miami Gardens, Fla. actually presented Ichiro with a plaque containing the song lyrics. The two conversed in english.
“We got a chance to interract with each other,” he said. “And he understands where I’m coming from.”
The singer said he was “very surprised” to find out Ichiro was a huge fan of his. This was Flo Rida’s first trip to Safeco Field and first time meeting Ichiro.
“Getting a chance to come here, being out here on the field, it’s big for me,” he said. “Instead of just playing out in the back of my projects with a stick and a tennis ball. I’m out here on the field with the real deal professionally.”
Ichiro told Flo Rida he was going to go in the clubhouse and listen to even more of his records. Which prompted Flo Rida to say that: “I might come out with a record just for him.”
As the headline says and as I told our Twitter and Facebook audience two hours ago, Roy Corcoran has been designated for assignment to clear room for Ryan Rowland-Smith.
Mariners manager Don Wakamatsu said letting Corcoran go was a tough decision.
“It almost reminds me of spring training a little bit,” Wakamatsu said. “Where you’ve got to let some people go. He’s been a big part of this organization. Such a quality person. It’s never fun to do that. It’s unfortunate for him, but we’ve got a need for a starter, obviously, and he was the one that we made the decision to move.”
As we mentioned up top, Franklin Gutierrez is back in tonight’s lineup. He only missed two games after crashing into that wall in Detroit.
“He’s gotten treatment after the last couple of days,” Wakamatsu said. “The trainers have done a good job and his body’s responded. I was kind of curious to see, after that four hour plane ride, how stiff he’d be. But he seems to have loosened up pretty good.”
Speaking of plane flights, the Mariners are going with right handed hitter Chris Shelton as tonight’s DH as opposed to Mike Sweeney. With Sweeney’s recent back issues, Wakamatsu was reluctant to play him after the long flight back from Detroit. It also gives the Mariners another opportunity to play Shelton and keep him fresh.
Chatted briefly with Adrian Beltre and asked him when he’d be back.
“Two more weeks,” he told me. “They told me two weeks.”
Thing is, he may have to go out on a rehabilitation assignment first. That part, he wasn’t entirely sure about just yet.
Caught up with Ken Griffey Jr., who was busy sending some text messages out yesterday to members of the Chicago White Sox. Griffey played with outfielder Dewayne Wise, who saved Mark Buehrle’s perfect game yesterday, with both the Reds and White Sox.
“That was quite a catch by D. Wise,” Griffey said. “I don’t know if a right hander could have made that play.”
Griffey also told catcher A.J. Pierzynski, who wasn’t behind the plate this time: “27 up, 27 down. You’ll never catch him again.”
On Buehrle: “It couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy.”
Speaking of Griffey, the Chateau Ste. Michelle winery in Woodinville has put out a limited edition labelling of “Junior 600” — 600 bottles of its Ethos 2005 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon with Griffey’s name and picture on the label. The bottles are to commemorate Griffey’s 600th home run and will be individually numbered and autographed by the slugger.
The bottles will be sold as part of a Junior 600 Night scheduled for Sunday, from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Safeco Field 1st Base Terrace Club, with proceeds going to the Seattle Children’s Hospital Foundation.
The cost is $350 and includes one autographed bottle, food and drinks and a chance to meet Griffey. A live and silent auction of autographed memorabilia from Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods, Kobe Bryant, LeBron James and Grady Sizemore will also be held.
Buying the bottles alone costs $250.
To purchase tickets to the event, or a bottle or case, call the Seattle Children’s Hospital Foundation at 206-987-2837 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
HP – Ron Kulpa
1B – Dale Scott
2B – Delfin Colon
3B – Mike DiMuro