baseball

Ichiro so close to 3,000 hits - if he can get enough at-bats

20 Comments
By STEVEN WINE

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He's been playing stateside 15 years and still needs an interpreter??

6 ( +10 / -4 )

Jbeezy off topic.

As my dad would scream, pitch outside and walk him.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

So hard to believe that the guy is over 40 ! (42) I watched him play many a game when he went to high-school in Nagoya.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

He has over 3000 already. MLB just doesn't recognize all of them.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Mattingly's comment about needing to win is kind of a slap in the face.. Ichiro still can play a decent right field and hopefully he can have a few 3-4 games to get to the magical 65 hits. The fans will fill the stadium if he gets close and they will do great sales with his uniform and other Ichiro items. Injuries to the other three outfielders will give Ichiro his chance. I wonder if anyone knows if Ichiro has ever been injured. Please mention that if anyone knows.

Ichiro is a very proud baseball player and has played and represented himself as a great baseball players whether in Japan or in America. It has been a pleasure to watch him all these years that I have and as much fun to watch Hank Aaron when I was growing up in Wisconsin.

Ichiro's disinterest in Japanese media is second to none!

I CHI RO .... GOOD LUCK!

0 ( +3 / -3 )

I believe that if you combine his MLB and NPB hits he is also pretty close to Pete Rose's career record. It won't count but it would be pretty cool if he got that. I think Mattingly's comment is fair game though, it would be very hard to justify keeping Ichiro in the lineup if he is hitting below .200. The team needs to win.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@kitzrow Ichiro has had a couple of weeks on the injured list, but nothing requiring surgery or major medical time off. An occasional sore muscle or random ulcer.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

He's been playing stateside 15 years and still needs an interpreter??

English ninja. Don't be fooled-

1 ( +3 / -2 )

A world record is cooler than a league record. Any flat earthers out there want to argue that Sadaharu Oh is famous for hitting 0 home runs in his career?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

He denies that chasing 3,000 is the motivation to keep going, saying he plays because he loves the game. But the countdown will add some uncharacteristic drama this season for the perennial also-ran Marlins.

This is the only reason the Marlin's signed him for a paltry sum. It gives them some media attention, particularly from Japan, which will bring more people to the ballpark and give them more money.

I believe that if you combine his MLB and NPB hits he is also pretty close to Pete Rose's career record. It won't count but it would be pretty cool if he got that.

This is the "goal" Ichiro is after. MLB may not recognize the record, but Japan will play it up for all it's worth, like they do with Oh, who is referred to as the WORLD homerun record holder, the same would go for Ichiro.

Ichiro's place in MLB history and eventual election to the Hall of Fame are assured, with the 10 straight 200 hit seasons and the single season hits record he should be a shoo-in.

His ego is what is stopping him from retiring.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

MLB may not recognize the record, but Japan will play it up for all it's worth, like they do with Oh, who is referred to as the WORLD homerun record holder, the same would go for Ichiro.

True, I didnt mean to disparage Ichiro with my comment. There is however one crucial distinction between Ichiro and Oh, which is that Ohs record was entirely achieved in NPB and is thus recognized in a professional league. Ichiro on the other hand wont hold a record that is recognized by either MLB or NPB if he tops Rose, combining tallies from two different leagues isnt something there is much precedent for. This isnt to say that such an achievement isnt impressive and worthy of recognition, just that some MLB fans aren`t going to accord it the same degree of recognition as such.

Rose, I should mention, has been a huge jerk about this in public comments, being pretty dismissive of Ichiro and saying that if you are going to count Ichiros NPB stats that you should add Roses minor league hits to his total. This is pretty unfair given that NPB isn`t a minor league, it was in fact the highest league Ichiro could play in for some of the most productive years of his career.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I have always liked Ichiro, but I really hope he either retires, or plays in a lower league next year. He is not good enough for the majors any more. I have nothing against players in any sport who continue playing something they love, but I do not like it when players stay in a league or competition that besmirches their past glories. It is just a bit sad.

Tennis and golf both have masters tours, which I think is ideal. Fans get to see their favourite players, while the players get to play at a reasonable level without looking silly.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Yubaru: "His ego is what is stopping him from retiring."

Exactly. He should have retired a few years ago, with dignity. As it is he is rarely mentioned anymore, and now only in reference to the near 3,000 hit mark (and again, only here). He is as arrogant as always, even though he tries to play it off, and proof that he is no longer really with it can be seen in his stats -- he is not hitting well, and does not deserve play. But that arrogance/ego will keep him going until he's literally running on an artificial hip, telling himself he 'can'.

rainyday: "Rose, I should mention, has been a huge jerk about this in public comments, being pretty dismissive of Ichiro and saying that if you are going to count Ichiros NPB stats that you should add Roses minor league hits to his total. This is pretty unfair given that NPB isn`t a minor league, it was in fact the highest league Ichiro could play in for some of the most productive years of his career."

I didn't actually know Rose said that. Yeah, he comes off as being a jerk by saying as much as he does, but he has a valid point. The NPB is not the MLB, and hence players in the NPB aspire to go higher, and further, with the "big leagues" being overseas. Likewise, it's not like you see MLB players aspiring to be in the NPB, it is where the washouts go to try and stay relevant and make money. So, Rose is correct, in a way; if Ichiro's NPB hits count his and every other MLB player's minor league hits should count as well.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

The NPB is not the MLB, and hence players in the NPB aspire to go higher, and further, with the "big leagues" being overseas. Likewise, it's not like you see MLB players aspiring to be in the NPB, it is where the washouts go to try and stay relevant and make money. So, Rose is correct, in a way; if Ichiro's NPB hits count his and every other MLB player's minor league hits should count as well.

There is a huge substantive difference between the two though (minors vs NPB). In terms of evaluating Ichiros accomplishments, the NPB in his first 7 years represented the top pro league that he could aspire to play in (he wasnt legally able to play in MLB owing to NPBs contractual stranglehold on players). Thus while in practical terms the quality of play in NPB is a bit lower, in terms of Ichiros career for those years NPB was the equivalent to him of MLB to Pete Rose during his career. Roses time in the minors was actually time he spent basically being considered not good enough to play in the Majors. Ichiro it should be noted also played in the Japanese minors (Orixs 2 Gun team), but much less so than Rose, which is a qualitative difference between the two that should count in Ichiros favor (and of course if we were to add Roses hits in the minors we might as well add Ichiro`s hits in the Japanese minors too).

Also another point is that during Ichiros time in NPB it hadnt yet degraded into the virtual prep school for aspiring MLB players that it is today. No position players had yet made the jump (Ichiro was the first) and for the first half of his career no pitchers had either. So the quality of competition he was facing was a lot higher than it is today in the NPB. Maybe not quite MLB level, but a lot closer.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Mattingly says 'we have to win." Good luck with that Donnie Baseball.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

He has over 3000 already. MLB just doesn't recognize all of them.

They can't do that since then they would have to add the stats of failed ex-MLBers who go on to have a career in Japan or South Korea.

it was in fact the highest league Ichiro could play in for some of the most productive years of his career.

Unfortunately, circumstances happen. They also don't add the stats the black players amassed in the Negro leagues in the era of segregation before assimilation to the MLB. (They can cite it alongside, but they don't add it.)

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Watching Ichiro play now is like watching a 50 year old pole dancer -- some players don't know when to quit...

0 ( +3 / -3 )

To be polite, we Japanese in USA use interpreter to aide talk same contents with American Eaanswer questions. People say we talk with heavy Japanese accent. Often a person speak with his English and his aide speaks for him with American English.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Ichiro is a legend

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Last year, Marlins Out fielders were not doing well and that coasted many game chances. So Marlins could sign Ichiro toward this years ambition?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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