If only Ichiro Suzuki had gone straight to MLB instead of playing 10 years for the Orix BlueWave of Japan’s Pacific League. Then his 4,000 professional hits would have further validated his status among Pete Rose and Ty Cobb as the only players to ever record that many hits in professional baseball.
Ichiro’s first 1,278 hits came in Japan before he came to America as a member of the Seattle Mariners. Since then, he’s collected hits at a staggering rate and clocked number 4,000 in the New York Yankees‘ pinstripes on Wednesday night. The 4-2 win for the Bronx Bombers over the Toronto Blue Jays was extra sweet for Ichiro, who is one of the greatest hitters of all time, although he doesn’t really get enough credit for it.
So while the casual baseball world is focusing on the PED, steroid-induced catastrophe that is Alex Rodriguez, the real fans of America’s pastime are giving credit where credit is due — to arguably the most consistent hitter to ever play the game. It’s great for Ichiro to possibly get to contend for a World Series in New York, but it’s just to see such a likable guy on such an unlikable team.
Congratulations, Ichiro. You deserve to play for a more classy organization.