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Ichiro heads into final year with Mariners

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29 Comments
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been playing in US for 11 years and still needs a translator?? smh

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

It's not like he's studying English while he's playing baseball all day everyday though. He probably only needs to use 6 or 7 set phrases every day. And he can actually speak quite a bit, but if they keep giving him that damn translator... might as well give him something to do.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Good luck Ichiro!!!

@Jbeezy: He can speak English just fine. Don't know why he uses a translator. Easier? Contractual? In case something is said that he must deny...??

1 ( +2 / -1 )

This guy is class personified. I hope he doesn't retire.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

This raises the question as to whether a retired Japanese player who decides to remain in the US could ever become a coach, or even a manager. It takes leadership and people skills, and of course a decent grasp of English. I'd like to see Ichiro remain involved in the game, but if he stays in the US his next career will probably involve sitting in front of a microphone and working as a commentator during NHK broadcasts.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

well I've heard a lot of things about his clubhouse demeanor. supposedly distant, aloof, arrogant etc. I think he is one of the greatest players in history, but his attitude stinks I heard.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

"well I've heard a lot of things about his clubhouse demeanor. supposedly distant, aloof, arrogant etc. I think he is one of the greatest players in history, but his attitude stinks I heard."

This often the quick judgement of the man, also note comments above alluding to his lack of learning ability. It has been discussed quietly in the media that he suffers from Autism or possibly Aspergers. This has never been officially commented upon by his management. If true it makes his accomplishments even more significant than they appear to be.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Jbeezy: "well I've heard a lot of things about his clubhouse demeanor. supposedly distant, aloof, arrogant etc. I think he is one of the greatest players in history, but his attitude stinks I heard."

It's not just rumour, the fact that he's arrogant and his attitude terrible, not to mention racist, was made quite clear when he moved to Seattle in the first place, and even clearer during the first WBC when Japan lost to SK (remember when he threw the hissy fit in the dugout?).

That said, he is indeed a great player, but I think he should retire after this year. He's getting a bit slower and hitting less, and it'd be good for him to go out while he's still relatively on top.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Jbeezy got a little job for you. Google "Ichiro's all start speech"

0 ( +2 / -2 )

if you call being arrogant not wanting to go boozing it up while on the road, taking practice seriously even when the team is in a major slump, and never saying a bad word about any member of your team or organization; then yeah, you can say he's pretty arrogant.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

that should read "Ichiro's all star speech"

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Smith: yea I remember that with SK in WBC 07? that's when my personal opinion about him changed. regardless about what Id heard prior. acted a total ass. will google all star speech later...

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Jbeezy: That was the nail in the coffin as far as I'm concerned but it started long before that. He CAN speak English, but I still remember before he left for Seattle him saying, "I won't study English. I don't need it. My wife can do it for me". Something like that.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Whether its Ichiro's fault, or the Mariner's, or both, the fact is that he has simply gotten a lot of meaningless hits to pad his own stats the last few years, as the team has generally been out of the playoff picture by around the All-star break. Great players are measured by more than just individual stats. aAnd on that basis, ichiro has not had a great career.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

Well, I don't care. He is a great looking man with a bat and that works for me!

0 ( +2 / -2 )

he has simply gotten a lot of meaningless hits to pad his own stats the last few years

What, he's supposed to stop hitting and be as bad as the rest of the team? A batter goes up to the plate to get hits. That's what Ichiro does, better than just about anyone else in baseball. I honestly don't care if he's Mother Teresa or Saddam Hussein, I don't plan to invite him to dinner. I just like watching him play the game

A single player can't make a bad team a good team. All he can do is what he does. Ichiro's career is not only great, it's worthy of the Hall of Fame.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Go Ichiro ! You speak the language of "baseball". We all love you. You don't speak English well ! Who cares ! Gambaro !

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The Mariners don’t want Ichiro to feel dishonored. This is basically the whole problem with the Mariners organization. I thought this was about getting into playoffs and winning a World Series. Ichiro is a cancer on the team and you can mentioned him in the same category as Milton Bradley. He isn’t getting on base with low .310 OBP in 2011. He can only hit dribbler singles and move the runner one base. Ichiro is great at bunting with a runner on 2nd and two outs. He has no patience at that plate and hits into a higher percentage of groundouts than the average major leaguer.

Mariners will never be able to truly turn the page on 2001 and move forward so long as an aging, unproductive Ichiro is around to collect $18 million. In Seattle, there are still undoubtedly those that would like to extend his contract. His teammates are aware of this reality implicitly and it can’t be anything other than unhealthy for a clubhouse.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

been playing in US for 11 years and still needs a translator??

You don't speak English well ! Who cares !

Ichiro actualy speaks English very well. He excels at everything he puts his mind to. But at the same time, he is a perfectionist. He often relies on a translator to make sure that there is absolutely no misunderstanding to what he is saying. As we all know, the media will jump on any little thing to twist someone's words for a story.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Ichiro is a cancer on the team and you can mentioned him in the same category as Milton Bradley.

when was the last time ichiro just packed up his bags and deserted his teammates.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

sfjp330. Everyone will admit that Ichiro had a bad year, but you fail to mention that his career on base percentage is .370 and that he only grounds out into a double play 5 times a year on average. He also led the league 3 times in intentional base on balls. Why in the world would a pitcher intentional walk a batter with "no patience at the plate?"

4 ( +4 / -0 )

JohnBecker -- you miss the point. If Ichiro were consistently playing on a top-caliber team, he would probably not be pitched to in the same manner that he has been. For example, if he were batting more with men on base/in scoring position. Now, if he gets one of his little, barely out of the inflield hits, it has no consequence. As for the Hall of Fame, possibly, if you just look at the number of hits. And, he has also been a Gold Glove winner for several years. But, has he really made the Mariners a better team, year in and year out?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Trading Ichiro is the best way to build future Mariners. The problem is, Ichiro's doing a little bit of nothing at this stage in his career, and it's not likely to improve to the point where the Mariners can justify tossing $17 million at him in his last year of his contract. Ichiro has inability to take control of the leadoff position and he is no longer a great leadoff hitter. Ichiro is simply an impatient hitter who places pressure on the lineup around him to compensate for the low number of pitches he takes on a given at-bat.

Figgins should bat leadoff this year, which leaves Ichiro's role in even further doubt. Ichiro doesn't fit with the Mariners anymore. Ichiro is not the type of hitter that will ease the growth of a young offense. Dealing Ichiro would not only net the Mariners a few decent prospects, who would give the team a better chance in the future. Unloading his massive salary would be an added bonus and give the team more payroll flexibility.

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

I can tell there's not a lot of Mariners fans on here. The guy speaks perfect English, even speaks slang well. He has a lot of people fooled with that translator.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

****The problem is, Ichiro's doing a little bit of nothing at this stage in his career,

Yeah, you are right having 184 hits in a line up that offers him zero protection because it is so weak is terrible! You must be tough to please! If Ichiro played for the Yankees or any other team that had better hitters in teh line up he would already have 3000 hits in the MLB alone...

4 ( +4 / -0 )

DoubleHelix74Feb. 23, 2012 - 06:06AM JST. Yeah, you are right having 184 hits in a line up that offers him zero protection because it is so weak is terrible! You must be tough to please! If Ichiro played for the Yankees or any other team that had better hitters in teh line up he would already have 3000 hits in the MLB alone...

In 2011, Ichiro had 677 at bats and with meager 40+ RBI's, 5 home runs and 39 walks? Always excuse that he had zero protection. I like your focus on plate discipline. Ichiro has never been inclined to walk. Other clubs know this, they also know the rest of the guys batting behind Ichiro is not much to talk about. Why offer good pitches to the Mariners best hitter when you have a reasonable chance of getting him to swing at garbage? So why’s Ichiro keep swinging at garbage? Would be nice to ask Ichiro, assuming it’s not eye problem, this guy likes his stats and you don’t get batting average from walks. However maybe its time for him to be selective.

Ichiro will not rebound. In looking at aging players, I’ve noticed a statistical trend that’s indicative of lost bat speed. The most obvious signs are a dramatically decreased ISOp, a decreased BABIP, and an increased GB%. Normally, an increase in grounders would yield an increased BABIP, so that’s the first red flag. The huge drop in power, combined with the drop in strikeouts, helps to explain it. Ichiro’s missing or fouling off the fastballs he used to drive with authority, and ends up taking defensive swings at tougher pitches. This results in more weak grounders – hence the odd combination of increased GB rate and decreased BABIP.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

sfjp, last I checked leadoff hitters don't get a lot of RBIs or home runs. You mentioned Chone Figgins. He had about 300 at bats last year with only 1 home run and 15 RBIs. Also, what's with the "huge drop in power?" He had 5 home runs last year and 6 the year before.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I was in a coffee shop and a few tables away Ichiro was with with some suited, serious looking people and I heard him talking about a move to Nagoya Dragons in 2013 as head coach and maybe in the starting line up depending on this year's form! I was double checking with my wife that my translation of his Japanese wasn't wrong and she said with shock on her face and tears in her eyes that YES! He will be a NAGOYA DRAGON in 2013! We were both estatic and it was surreal like a dream, then I heard my wife's voice screech, " Breakfast is ready! " and I woke to find it really was a DREAM! Ahhh....... Yukio dream on! Dream on! Let's hope Ichiro gives his fans in Japan one last season!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I heard that the owner of the Mariners is Japanese. Is this correct?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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