Ichiro To Announce Retirement From MLB

Arnold Nichols
March 22, 2019

Iconic Japanese superstar Ichiro Suzuki, who has more hits in professional baseball than any other Japanese player, told the Seattle Mariners he intends to retire, an informed source said Thursday.

Seattle Mariners right fielder Ichiro Suzuki, second from right, is applauded by teammates Brandon Brennan (65), catcher Omar Narvaez and the Oakland Athletics, rear, while leaving the field for defensive substitution in the eighth inning of Game 2 of their Major League baseball opening series at Tokyo Dome in Tokyo, Thursday, March 21, 2019.

He's been absolutely fawned upon the past week - by fans and media alike - as the Mariners took part in one promotional event after another leading up to the two-game set against the A's. "It's about today. I'm just going to take it day by day and we'll get to that point where it does come".

He has 3,089 hits since joining the Mariners in 2001, and another 1,278 playing earlier in Japan - baseball's all-time hits leader.

Ichiro has had a difficult spring, finding it hard to rebound after stepping aside last May to become a Mariners' front office assistant. Ichiro was the Rookie of the Year and the MVP, beginning his unprecedented run among baseball's elite.

Absolutely no one took umbrage to the idea, and perhaps this Tokyo trip - and Ichiro's role in it - was being eyed from the beginning, so it made sense that he remained around the team a year ago and during the offseason. And whether or not the translation of Ichiro's remarks accurately portrayed his true feelings for Northeast Ohio or not, we can never truly know.

Baseball: Ichiro to announce his retirement: source

The Baseball Hall of Fame announced immediately after the game that Ichiro will be eligible for induction in 2025, and he'll have a resume worthy of first-ballot enshrinement (if not 100 percent of the vote) as a 10-time MLB All-Star and 10-time Gold Glove victor. His influence and importance shouldn't be understated.

He finishes his career with a career.311 batting average, with 3,089 hits, 117 home runs and 780 RBI with the Mariners, New York Yankees and Miami Marlins. In the years since, players like Nori Aoki, Kosuke Fukudome and Kaz Matsui followed. "He had a chance to play in his home country where they've seen him grow up".

As for the reception at Ichiro's finale, he added: "I think that atmosphere, it only happens to special players". Suzuki hit.205 in 44 at-bats and all nine of his hits last season were singles.

Ichiro became a one-word, household name in Seattle. Roenis Elias relieved and got Matt Chapman to hit a comebacker, but first baseman Jay Bruce dropped the throw, allowing a run to score that pulled the A's within 3-2.

In his two trips to the plate the 45-year-old popped up to second and then walked in the fourth inning in his second and final appearance at a hitter.

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