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Ichiro gets 4,257th career hit, surpassing Pete Rose's total

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Not really a record when you consider Ichiro got over a thousand of those hits in the sub par Japanese leagues. Great talent, Japan's best ever but this contrived record is so much stretching..... .

-3 ( +10 / -13 )

If he had played in MLB instead of Japan during the early part of his career he probably would have broken the record much earlier, so it's a stretch to imply that he got some sort of unfair advantage.

To me this is more akin to the NBA and NHL recognizing stats from the ABA and WHL, which might have been slightly inferior leagues but not minor leagues .

4 ( +9 / -5 )

When Ichiro played in the Japanese Pacific League it was considered vastly inferior to the Japanese Central League; so although he is a great hitter Ichiro would never have broken Rose's record if he played his entire career in the major leagues.

-8 ( +4 / -12 )

The way they're promoting this in Japan makes me think the "they" here are trying to equate the NPB with the MLB. This is odd since the NPB has rules, to prevent stacking a team with ringers, regarding the number of washed up foreign players on a teams active roster (currently 4). This is the league in which Ichiro got 1,278 hits.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Ichiro is having a magical season. His batting average of .349 at age 42 is amazing. Only 3 other players at that age have batted over .300 and NONE in the last 66 years. Think about that. No one has done what he is doing now for over half a century. Truly a legend and a pleasure to watch.

15 ( +16 / -1 )

He's a great player with a hall-of-fame career but this manufactured record is going a bit too far. A record that includes his time in Japan is not valid.

-5 ( +5 / -10 )

We hear the same rhetoric about how his stats in Japan are not equal to those in the MLB. But how do his stats really compare? Was his average significantly higher in Japan (indicating that it was indeed "easier") or what?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Okay people, now check out this headline in the Miami Herald:

Ichiro Suzuki passes Pete Rose with 4,257 combined hits

www.miamiherald.com/sports/mlb/miami-marlins/article83967877.html

So I think this settles the argument over discussing the breaking of Rose's record is limited to the Japanese media. His team's hometown paper also concurs.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

What's so great about hitting a ball with a bat?

-9 ( +3 / -12 )

Kick board - I agree that Ichiro is doing great, but hitting over 300 in part time play isn't the same as doing it in a full season so you are overstating it a bit.

Glad to see he got the one that put him past Rose!

0 ( +2 / -2 )

The hits record is there because baseball fans like to know who the real greats of baseball are. The record does not lie. Ichiro Suzuki is and will forever be regarded as a truely great hall of fame player. In terms of hits, his getting on 1st base record, stolen bases, golden glove fielding, all-star appearances etc. Whether the Americans try to dismiss their record being taken from a convicted gambler or not, Ichiro Suzuki is a great of the game. Do people here seriously imply that Ichiro is some kind of average player? Ridiculous sour grapes.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Ichiro is truly a great baseball player; on that everyone agrees. But mixing Japan's hits in the Japanese Pacific League with the American Major League is not a fair comparison.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

"What's so great about hitting a ball with a bat?" @jalepeno. Nothing really. In this case it is the pursuit and near-capture of excellence over a lifetime that captures our respect and imagination.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Rose is too resentful for someone who has no status or standing in pro baseball. That was clear when he went after Tuffy Rhodes for his NPB homers totals, rather than the player who broke Ichiro's single season hits record, Matt Murton. The best I can figure is that Rose is an old school racist of the Marge Schott/ Donald Trump variety. Otherwise why put down Rhodes and ignore Murton who was not MLB star material either?

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Ichiro's a great baseball player, still strong and 42 to boot, so I'll just leave it at that.

Congratulations!

4 ( +5 / -1 )

"What's so great about hitting a ball with a bat?" @jalepeno. Nothing really. In this case it is the pursuit and near-capture of excellence over a lifetime that captures our respect and imagination

I agree. Baseball bores me silly, but I respect the persuit of excellence for what it is.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Not even sure why they're counting "career hits" in the first place, they should only be counted by team. Baseball is about as silly as it gets so no surprises here

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Congratulations to Ichiro for breaking a record, great achievement. He's a true pro who plays with so much class. We wish him great success for the rest of the season and the rest of his career.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Regarding Ichiro's career hits total versus Rose, I guess the big question is whether you believe that pro baseball in Japan from 1992 to 2000--the nine years when Ichiro played for the Orix Blue Wave--was at the same level of quality and competitiveness as major league baseball in the United States from 1963 to 1986 (when Rose played for the Reds, Phillies, and Expos) or since 2001 (with Ichiro playing for the Mariners, Yankees, and Marlins).

In 1994, at the age of 20, Ichiro batted .385 for Orix and had 210 hits. Would he have done the equivalent playing for the Mariners and batting against AL pitching? Batting .385 with more than 200 hits at the age of 20 is an amazing feat, and we'll simply never know if Ichiro would have done the same thing in the AL or NL.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The most moving moment in my sports viewing life to date was watching Ichiro bat on the top of tenth, standing 3 - 3 in the final of the 2009 WBC against Korea. With two out and two runners on base, and after two strikes, Ichiro hit four fouls (giving himself a stomach ulcer in the process) waiting for a ball that he could hit for an "timely two base" (RBI double?) which he did. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u0Ep82TVBJ8.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Even grumpy old Pete Rose says Ichiro is a first-ballot hall of famer. That's good enough.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

If MLB is so much superior to NPB, how come Team Japan with majority NPB players won the WBC 2 out of 3 times against teams with majority MLB players?

perplexing

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

Rose is too resentful for someone who has no status or standing in pro baseball. That was clear when he went after Tuffy Rhodes for his NPB homers totals, rather than the player who broke Ichiro's single season hits record, Matt Murton. The best I can figure is that Rose is an old school racist of the Marge Schott/ Donald Trump variety. Otherwise why put down Rhodes and ignore Murton who was not MLB star material either?

In fairness to Rose, it is a huge stretch to say that just because he mentioned Tuffy Rhodes instead of Matt Murton he is a racist. Its way more likely that Rhodes just happened to be the first name he could think of off the top of his head.

That said though, even regardless of who it was it just needlessly made his comments seem even more mean-spirited. Why the need to belittle Tuffy Rhodes when you are talking about Ichiro? He has nothing to do with Ichiro`s record so why put him down?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I do not get all the talk about the “manufactured” record. Was it the same player who hit the ball all these times? I had no idea but in the news this morning they said that he began his carrier in 1994 (if I remember well). Amazing for an athlete in such a competitive sport! Wish him luck and all the best!

@ F4HA604: If MLB is so much superior to NPB, how come Team Japan with majority NPB players won the WBC 2 out of 3 times against teams with majority MLB players?

Ha ha. Indeed.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

"If MLB is so much superior to NPB, how come Team Japan with majority NPB players won the WBC 2 out of 3 times against teams with majority MLB players?"

I don't know. But if MLB is not so superior to NPB, as you appear to be implying, then what is truly perplexing is that Ichiro and Hideki Matsui--the top two hitters in Japanese baseball in the late 1990s and early 2000s--both decided to leave Japan for the United States just as they were entering the prime years of their respective careers. If they each didn't think they had something to prove by playing in a superior baseball league, then why did they jump ship and why did their career moves receive nonstop press coverage in Japan?

Did Ichiro and Matsui do it just for the money?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

On his MLB record alone he will be elected in the MLB hall of fame in Cooperstown, NY. His Japanese league stats are just that. The people who vote in the hall of fame balloting will not take his NPB stats into consideration. As it should be. If people want to say he holds the "World Record" for most hits so be it.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

He is a fantastic player. That cannot be disputed. But to say he 'broke' a record is misleading and incorrect. He accomplished a personal record, and that's all. He has not broken Pete Rose's record for hits in the MLB until he himself passes those hits IN THE MLB. You can't say he's broken Pete Rose's MLB hit record by using his hits in Japanese national baseball no matter how much you try to spin it because, regardless of which you think is better Japan national baseball is NOT the MLB. Saying he surpassed Rose's MLB hit record is stupid.

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

I don't know. But if MLB is not so superior to NPB, as you appear to be implying, then what is truly perplexing is that Ichiro and Hideki Matsui--the top two hitters in Japanese baseball in the late 1990s and early 2000s--both decided to leave Japan for the United States just as they were entering the prime years of their respective careers. If they each didn't think they had something to prove by playing in a superior baseball league, then why did they jump ship and why did their career moves receive nonstop press coverage in Japan?

Did Ichiro and Matsui do it just for the money?

Probably a bit of both. The top salaries in MLB are about 5 times what they are in NPB so they both made a huge amount more money by heading to the US. But there probably is the desire to compete at the top level too. NPB isnt a minor league as some Pete Rose fans are dismissively calling it, but at the same time it isnt at the same level as MLB either.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

If MLB is so much superior to NPB, how come Team Japan with majority NPB players won the WBC 2 out of 3 times against teams with majority MLB players?

perplexing

Not really when you actually follow baseball. The WBC is played just before MLB spring training. North American players, who don't care about the cash grab that is the WBC stay away in droves citing non existent injuries. Its rare that elite American players join up at all. Those that do are more concerned about avoiding injuries, especially pitchers. Japanese (and Korean) baseball on the other hand, see the event as their holy grail. Not only do their best players go, they go through rigorous training for it beforehand. Its no wonder Japan has won it twice. The best teams are simply going through the motions.

Japanese baseball is about the equivalent of Triple A ball in the states with a few exceptional players like Ichiro, Matsui and Darvish, for example. The Pacific League where Ichiro played was maybe not even that.

For European "football" fans who are still confused, it'd be like a player scoring 200 goals in the 3rd division and claiming those for his Priemier League total.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

As a big fan of both NPB and MLB, I think it's fair to say that the NPB is roughly equivalent of "AAAA Baseball" in American terms - definitely a step up from the existing minor league system (AAA level), but definitely a step down from the MLB level. Why else would we see fringe MLB players succeed so consistently in the MLB? Tuffy Rhodes, Wladamir Balentien, Kris Johnson. Last year, Tony Barnette was a lights-out closer for the Central League Champion Swallows. This year, he's a so-so middle reliever for the Texas Rangers. Certainly, some of Japan's top players throughout history have been top players in the world (Ichiro included), and capable of being a star in either league. But you cannot judge the talent of the entire NPB based on the successes of Ichiro and Matsui. Ichiro is a star player - one of the best ever - and a Hall of Famer. Had he played his whole career in the MLB, he likely would be the career hits champion. But he didn't, and his NPB hits are not equivalent to MLB hits. Sorry.

F4HA604: If MLB is so much superior to NPB, how come Team Japan with majority NPB players won the WBC 2 out of 3 times against teams with majority MLB players?

Because the American WBC teams are comprised of MLB players that no one has ever heard of. American professional players give their loyalty to their pro teams first, and national teams a distant second. If the American stars joined the WBC team and played their hardest (as the Japanese WBC teams do), it would be a different story. But Americans think of the WBC as a kind of fun off-season exhibition. That's all.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Thanks, Strangerland!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I reserve judgement until I see what Pete Rose says after Ichiro gets 3000 hits. He should congratulate Ichiro, say he is a great player and move on. But for now, I think Pete has a point, this "record" is meaningless because Pete Rose still have the MAJOR LEAGUE record. (and that's about all he has left in his life at this point, so let him have it?) I saw Ichiro's response after the record and it was very classy on his part to downplay it and just say it was for the fans.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Sport writers agree, Pete Rose is the Hit King : https://www.yahoo.com/sports/blogs/mlb-big-league-stew/pete-rose-or-ichiro--who-is-baseball-s-true-hit-king-233915669.html

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

As I have been stating this week, no matter who says what Ichiro is the joint World Record Holder of career number of hit for professional baseball and will be the sole holder of that title when he hits another.

MLB, NPB as well as Korean and Taiwan professional baseball is only part in the world of professional baseball.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

He is a fantastic player. That cannot be disputed. But to say he 'broke' a record is misleading and incorrect. He accomplished a personal record, and that's all. He has not broken Pete Rose's record for hits in the MLB until he himself passes those hits IN THE MLB

But nowhere in the article does it say he broke the record, it merely says his combined career total surpassed that of Rose, which is factually correct.

Nobody is saying Ichiro has the MLB record, they are saying that he has a previously unrecognized record, which is the most hits in MLB/NPB combined (technically Rose had that record too, with all of them coming in the MLB of course).

This isn`t a spurious, made up record as Rose and others are implying either. NPB was the highest professional league Ichiro could aspire to play in during the first part of his career. Its level is slightly lower than that of MLB, but it is still a major league (much like the ABA and WHA in the 1970s were in their respective sports, or the Negro leagues in baseball in the early 20th century). Failing to recognize it as something (yes, not the MLB record, but still worthy of acknowledgment) is just totally unfair to Japanese players who have to spend the first part of their career in NPB.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Tatanka: Sport writers agree, Pete Rose is the Hit King : https://www.yahoo.com/sports/blogs/mlb-big-league-stew/pete-rose-or-ichiro--who-is-baseball-s-true-hit-king-233915669.html

Tatanka, did you read your own article? It actually says the total opposite of what you claim.

Your article gets the comments of 2 sports writers. Chris Cwik said, " Rose is officially the Hit King" and "the level of competition in NPB lies somewhere in between the majors and Triple-A." Mark Townsend said, "Ichiro still needs 427 hits in professional baseball to be considered its new and true hit king."

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

So I think this settles the argument over discussing the breaking of Rose's record is limited to the Japanese media. His team's hometown paper also concurs.

His hometown newspaper has a financial interest in the team. Another stretch.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

My apologies to Tatanka! Regarding my above posting, I read your comment but somehow my brain read "Ichiro" where you wrote "Pete Rose." I got it all wrong – gomen!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

For European "football" fans who are still confused, it'd be like a player scoring 200 goals in the 3rd division and claiming those for his Priemier League total.

I am European and a football fan and you are clearly neither. I would liken it to a player scoring 200 goals in the French League and another 300 goals in the Premier League and comparing him to a striker who scored 450 goals who only played in the Premier League.

Interesting analogy comparing MLB to the Premier League. The Premier League is regarded as the most exciting and interesting league in the world, but in reality the national team fail at global tournaments. Exactly the same as MLB. Exciting and interesting but not much to show for it on a global level.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Both great players!

Ichiro - great on the field and a class act off the field. A great ambassador for Japan to the U.S. A hard worker and a great example for all.

Rose - great on the field and should be in the Hall of Fame. Off the field a different story but there are players in the hall that have done worse. Rose is arguably one of the best players ever and gave 100% every game. As a fan it was worth the price of a ball game (back in the days when it was reasonable) just to watch Rose play.

All time hits leader - Rose - and Ichiro (with an asterisk). It is very possible if Ichiro played the first part of his career in the major leagues he would have surpassed Rose earlier (as there are 162 games in the MLB's longer season.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

“For me, it’s not about the record,” Suzuki said. “It’s about my teammates and the fans.” LOL if that was the case he would have moved to a team that had a chance of winning the world series or even retired years ago. No its all about statistics and cash for Ichiro

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

Ichiro - great on the field and a class act off the field.

Great on the field, past tense, and class-act off? Hardly, he is an arrogant man who only cares about himself and not his teammates, if he was such a class act he would be known for mentoring younger players, he doesn't, and would be involved more with promoting the sport itself, he doesnt.

Ichiro was a great player, just playing now for the record books and is lucky to have a team to play for at his age.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

he would have moved to a team that had a chance of winning the world series or even retired years ago

I'm not following. He DID go to the Yankees, but they couldn't win a world series. And retiring would be "for the fans?" I think his fans would prefer to watch him do what he's doing now, getting hits, stealing bases, and making amazing catches in the outfield. And you think he's doing it for money? He's making all of $1 million dollars this year. That's about 3% of what top earners make in the MLB these days.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

And you think he's doing it for money? He's making all of $1 million dollars this year. That's about 3% of what top earners make in the MLB these days.

Hence he is doing it not because of the money but for the records. Be that as it may, I would be willing to bet that he would pay a team to let him keep playing until he has all the individual records he wants.

Sadly many of the "stars" in just about all sports have a hard time with having to quit the game that they love to play. There are very few that are willing to acknowledge that they are not capable of keeping up with the younger players.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

@ The Original Wing: no problem. I like Ichiro; he really brought a new dynamic to MLB. I consider Pete Rose the Anthony Weiner of baseball. Rose ( a great player ) screwed up his life by gambling and Weiner (a good politician) screwed up his life due to his weird sexual proclivities. BTW, Ichiro starred in a drama a few years ago here in Japan; he can definitely make a living as an actor once he hangs up his cleats...

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I think Pete Rose has a valid beef. Not to take away anything from Ichiro; I think he's a great player. He deserves the respect he currently has. He's one of the few Japanese baseball players to transcend all the hype and become one the MLB greats. But a good portion of his hits were in Japan, and that matters because of the differences between the Japanese league and MLB. The strike zones differ in size, the fields vary in dimensions, ball sizes are different, and the caliber of play is different. The MLB is a higher caliber of baseball, and because of that, Ichiro deserves his props. On the other hand, however, the hits in Japan shouldn't qualify in MLB terms. And Pete rose has a point.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

rainy day: "But nowhere in the article does it say he broke the record, it merely says his combined career total surpassed that of Rose, which is factually correct."

I did not specify, and was referring to poster and/or people in the general public who say as such.

"NovenachamaJUN. 16, 2016 - 11:30AM JST Congratulations to Ichiro for breaking a record, great achievement."

That's but one example of many over the past couple of days. What record did he break?

"Failing to recognize it as something (yes, not the MLB record, but still worthy of acknowledgment) is just totally unfair to Japanese players who have to spend the first part of their career in NPB."

And Rose himself as well as everyone on here has recognised Ichiro and his effort and declared him a hall-of-famer, but the fact remains you cannot recognise Japanese pro-baseball as being on par with the MLB, and hence players here always aspire to move up to the latter. The hits should also not be counted together with the number of MLB hits, or else Rose's minor league hits should be combined with his major league total for "total number of hits combined", in which case Ichiro has yet to surpass him.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

I am European and a football fan and you are clearly neither. I would liken it to a player scoring 200 goals in the French League and another 300 goals in the Premier League and comparing him to a striker who scored 450 goals who only played in the Premier League.

And if I asked 10 other Euros for a similar analogy, Id get 10 different leagues/scenarios thrown in. I think we all get the point. Japanese baseball is not nearly on a par with MLB.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

(giving himself a stomach ulcer in the process)

Timtak@that is an old wive's tale. Gastric ulcers are caused by the presence of Helicobacter pylori, not stress.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

The most moving moment in my sports viewing life to date was watching Ichiro bat on the top of tenth, standing 3 - 3 in the final of the 2009 WBC against Korea. With two out and two runners on base, and after two strikes, Ichiro hit four fouls (giving himself a stomach ulcer in the process) waiting for a ball that he could hit for an "timely two base" (RBI double?) which he did. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u0Ep82TVBJ8.

a base hit in an exhibition game was your "most moving" moment?

yikes...

2 ( +5 / -3 )

I saw Ichiro's response after the record and it was very classy on his part to downplay it and just say it was for the fans.

Rose felt himself challenged. Shouldn't have since he is so great. Ichiro wasn't about challenging or competing with Rose. That's what sets these two apart. Let the rest of the world quibble about it all.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Congratulations. I would count myself lucky to see Mr. Ichiro make a hit in a game.

I would not worry too much about anything Pete Rose says, about anything. The man thoroughly disgraced himself, both on and off the field. IMO, he deserves his life-time ban from the Baseball Hall of Fame.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

All this criticism about getting the hits in the Japanese League. Well, if his hits were only in the Japanese League, ok. But he came to the ML and did even better, got the record for most hits in a season! He would have had the hits no matter where he played. Give credit where credit is due.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Even the media cannot redefine an orange to be an apple. Please stop with the Rose comparisons.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I have no direct knowledge of Ichiro's ulcer, but I might add that they can also be caused by excessive ingestion of NSAIDs, which may make professional athletes vulnerable.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Not one person in the majors, past or present, who's been interviewed on the debate has said that Ichiro can be called the "Hit King"; not until he gets another 427 or so to pass Rose's minor league hits if they are going to count his Japanese professional league hits. And nearly all of them said they LOVE Ichiro the man, and hate Rose the man (for betting on the sport), and praised Japan baseball, while admitting it is not on par with the MLB.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

Don't see what the fuss is over this 'so-called' record. Now, when Ichiro gets to 3,000 bonafide MLB hits (which he definitely will get soon), then he can be called great. For when Ichiro gets to 3,000 hits, he will get there in the least number of years amongst any who belong to the 3,000 hits club, and he would have a higher lifetime batting average (.314) than Rose's .303 lifetime.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

For when Ichiro gets to 3,000 hits, he will get there in the least number of years amongst any who belong to the 3,000 hits club, and he would have a higher lifetime batting average (.314) than Rose's .303 lifetime.

after 7 years plying his trade in AAA ball, sure. And how many of those hits were extra base hits? Not too many. Ichiro, for all his talent with the bat, is a singles hitter who never generated all that many runs for his teams.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

Ichiro, for all his talent with the bat, is a singles hitter who never generated all that many runs for his teams.

The same could be said for players like Wee Willie Keeler (who had only 33 HRs compared to Ichiro's 113) and yet he is in the Hall of Fame. Ichiro even has more RBI's than Richie Ashburn (747 to 586) and Richie is in the Hall of Fame.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

If anything, the one thing I remember about Ichiro which stands out with me, is how he always respected the game and played it the right way. He once visited the Negro Leagues baseball stadium in Kansas City and came away so touched by it that he donated a nice sum of money to help keep it running. I even remember Ichiro visiting the grave of George Sisler (who he broke the single season hits record, back in 2004) to pay his respects. He felt that it was only appropriate for him to pay homage to the past.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

And if I asked 10 other Euros for a similar analogy, Id get 10 different leagues/scenarios thrown in. I think we all get the point. Japanese baseball is not nearly on a par with MLB.

There are so many more factors to consider in soccer, it is kind of the worst analogy. With baseball it is 1 vs 1. You don't need service from your teammates to get a hit, nor can a team "bunker" to prevent you from hitting. Other than guys like Ichiro's former teammate Bret Boone who have 1 good season because they were on steroids, the good hitters are pretty consistent.

So while hitting in Japan doesn't prove he could hit in the MLB, based on his performance once hit got there, its safe to assume he would have had a massive amount of hits. Comparing him to Oh, Rhodes, Murton, etc. doesn't really make sense because unlike those guys, Ichiro proved he could hit in both leagues for an extended period of time. Also remember the MLB season is longer than the Japanese one, so he wouldn't need to bat .385 or whatever to get 200 hits in a season.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Congratulations on BEATING Pete Rose.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Pete Rose used a corked bat (for bat speed) so I'm in favor of stripping him of all his records and accomplishments. Incidentally, using a corked bat improves bat speed but also results in softer hits so he was actually screwing himself.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Couldn't be happier about this news. Ichiro is an outstanding athlete and deserves the fame. Wish we had more players like him in the Major Leagues.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

And Rose himself as well as everyone on here has recognised Ichiro and his effort and declared him a hall-of-famer, but the fact remains you cannot recognise Japanese pro-baseball as being on par with the MLB, and hence players here always aspire to move up to the latter. The hits should also not be counted together with the number of MLB hits, or else Rose's minor league hits should be combined with his major league total for "total number of hits combined", in which case Ichiro has yet to surpass him.

As Ive pointed out earlier though, this isnt about comparing NPB to MLB, clearly MLB is the superior league. What it is about is assessing how to judge Ichiros specific accomplishment, and the (inferior) quality of NPB is but one of several factors that should be used to assess that. Simply saying that NPB is lower, end of story, isnt giving Ichiro`s case a fair hearing IMHO.

What we have here is two competing definitions of the record for the hypothetical title of all time hit king. One of these looks solely at MLB totals (Rose) and the other looks at combined NPB/MLB totals (Ichiro). Both can co-exist (since they exist in fact), its just a matter of which one you prefer to give more weight to.

In Rose`s favor you have the fact that he accomplished all of his hits in what was undeniably the top professional league in the world. That obviously carries a lot of weight with it.

In Ichiros favor you have the fact that he accomplished all of his hits in what was the top professional league he could aspire to play in at the time. You also have the fact that, given his record, his time in NPB probably hurt him rather than helped him - though we cant know for certain he most likely would have gotten more rather than less hits had he played in MLB for those years. Nobody is seriously arguing that he was a Tuffy Rhodes type power hitter whose stats were inflated during his NPB years (which is what Rose disengenuously is implying), pretty much every bit of evidence we have points to the opposite.

To me, Rose is still the hit king based on the above comparison, but I dont think it is even remotely fair to attribute a value of ZERO to Ichiros NPB accomplishments and completely ignore what his 4257th hit means. Its a record on its own, whose value may be lower than the pure MLB record but is nonetheless deserving of recognition for what it is.

About the minor league totals, that is just irrelevant for several reasons. For starters, all of Roses minor league hits came at A level or lower, which is vastly inferior to NPB levels. More importantly, those years in the minors represent time in his career when Rose was playing at a lower level within the US hierarchy, basically just waiting until he got promoted. Ichiros years in NPB weren`t like that - he was playing at the highest level possible in Japanese baseball.

Also, if we are going to throw in Roses minor league totals, then it is only fair to throw in Ichiros minor league totals as well since he played most of two seasons in the Japanese minors and those hits arent included in his NPB totals. Doing so his career total is still a bit behind Roses Major/minor league total, but definitely within reach. This is total BS though because Rose is just throwing that out there in a classic case of goal post moving and not because he thinks it is really relevant. If Ichiros combined totals pass Roses combined totals it is 100% certain that Rose will just quietly stop mentioning his minor league totals and fall back to the NPB sucks line of argument.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Its a record on its own, whose value may be lower than the pure MLB record but is nonetheless deserving of recognition for what it is.

I wouldn't even say it is lower in value, really. Athletes get better over time. It's very likely Ichiro's hits in Japan are worth more than Rose's hits 3 decades ago. Rose's doubles also may have less weight when you consider the difference in times. In all, there are too many factors to consider when comparing the records, but your point stands that simply discounting Ichiro's NPB hits is plain ignorance.

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I wouldn't even say it is lower in value, really. Athletes get better over time. It's very likely Ichiro's hits in Japan are worth more than Rose's hits 3 decades ago. Rose's doubles also may have less weight when you consider the difference in times. In all, there are too many factors to consider when comparing the records, but your point stands that simply discounting Ichiro's NPB hits is plain ignorance.

Fair points. I think it is at least debatable which one is the more impressive record, as you note my main point is that we shouldn`t dismiss it outright just because part of his numbers came in NPB.

There is actually an interesting comparison to be made with Sadaharu Ohs career home run record. I think Hank Aaron/Barry Bonds supporters have a much stronger argument against that than Pete Rose supporters do since they can actually identify specific ways in which Ohs numbers were inflated by playing in NPB (smaller ball parks, use of compressed bats, etc). They have always, in other words, been able to mount a convincing argument based on evidence specific to what Oh accomplished and havent had to base their argument solely on the staleNPB is lower than MLBtrope (which, while true, is meaningless when applied to a given accomplishment unless you can point out a specific way in which that lower level gave the player an advantage which they wouldnt have benefited from in MLB).

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A team might sub per but hitters and homerun hitters, base stealers might not. I am an Angels and Dodjersvfann. This year, Angels lose more than winning but each bame Trump hit and steal base Pujol,and Trump just homers and still lose because other tram outdo. Baseball teams are very integrated. Rose is Moore interested in numbers. Other hitters get hitting coach jobs. No wonder no team hires him.

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No wonder no team hires him.

Not sure what you are talking about. Rose is banned for life...

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He is not banned for everything. That is why he is earning money by analyzing Ichiro

Each MLB team has recruiters and they try to recruit Asian players for major league level bypassing A, Double A, TripleA experience. Example is Tanaka of Yankees.

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