Ichiro Suzuki Records 3,000th Career Hit
Ichiro Suzuki made history today by recording his 3,000th hit. The Miami Marlins were facing the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field on Sunday. Ichiro came to the plate with one away in the top of the 7th and the Marlins up 8-6. After working the count to 2-0, Ichiro ripped the next pitch from Chris Rusin to right field, smacking it off the wall for a triple, just shy of a home run. The ball left his bat at 93 MPH and traveled 364 feet. With that, Ichiro became the newest member of the 3,000-hit club. He is just the second player ever to record hit No. 3,000 on a triple.
The 42-year-old future Hall of Famer has truly had an outstanding career since coming into the league in 2001 at the age of 27. He took the league by storm in his first year, winning both Rookie of the Year and MVP. Later, in 2004, he set the record for most hits in a season, with 262. Ichiro never was a power hitter; only 113 of his 3,000 hits in his 16-year MLB career have left the park. Instead, he proved a master of placing the ball to all fields. Before coming to Major League Baseball, he was a seven-time batting champion in his home country of Japan.
One wonders what he might have done in the majors had he started there instead of in Japan. But at 5’9” and only 120 pounds, he was thought by many to be too small to make an impact. However, he changed the way that batting was seen; instead of hitting for power, he hit for average and placement. He was a truly great ambassador for the game of baseball, both for players coming over from Japan and for the MLB in general. He truly is a class act, and will go down as one of the best to play the game when all is said and done.
Last Word on Sports would like to congratulate Ichiro Suzuki on another fantastic career milestone.