Seattle Mariners rumors about Ichiro Suzuki and the 2019 MLB season are still getting discussed. Recent Mariners news revealed that Ichiro was beginning to transition to a new role [VIDEO] in the front office for the team. It was not a retirement for Ichiro, though, as recent reports by Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto, Ichiro’s agent, and even the future Hall of Fame outfielder himself have not mentioned that word. Instead, they have all alluded to the return of Ichiro Suzuki at the beginning of the next Major League Baseball season.

Mariners vs Athletics Japan series

The Oakland Athletics will host the Seattle Mariners for two games in Japan next year.

The short series will take place on March 20 and 21 in Tokyo, giving the teams a shot to appeal to a new audience. The Japan series will mark the opening of the 2019 MLB season, even though it will be a few days after that when most of the other teams take the field for the first time. It's a good shot for the Mariners to stake a claim on first place in the American League West.

In addition to the two regular season games between the Mariners and A’s, each franchise will also play two exhibition games against Japanese teams. Those games will take place on March 17 and 18, basically taking the slot of normal Spring Training games for the teams. It will also allow the players to adjust to the time differences before the real games get started on March 20 and 21.

The return of Ichiro Suzuki

This is where the Seattle Mariners rumors surface, as an Ichiro Suzuki return could be in the cards.

It’s possible that Ichiro could just return for the exhibition games that the Mariners play against the Japanese teams, but it’s also possible he could be on the 25-man roster against the Oakland Athletics as well. This would be a really interesting way for him to leave the game of baseball, especially playing for his primary team in front of the fans who have loved cheering him on for years.

There is a lot of debate taking place among Mariners fans, many of which are unclear what is going on with the Ichiro situation. While he is not currently on the 25-man roster for the team, he is still working out with them before games and hanging out in the clubhouse [VIDEO]. Jerry Dipoto has stated that he is a great influence on the team and maybe that is why they are playing better than a year ago. For now, the Seattle Mariners rumors about Ichiro Suzuki remain unclear, but fans of the team should not be surprised if he suits up again for the team in Spring Training 2019.