Ichiro takes final bow after 27-year baseball career

Ichiro walks off into history before packed Tokyo Dome crowd
Ichiro Suzuki retires to ovation after sparkling 27-year baseball career

24 March, 2019

The future Hall of Famer was taken out of his final game in the bottom of the eighth inning of an eventual 12-inning Mariner victory to an enormous ovation and curtain call.

Ichiro has been swarmed over in games in Japan.

This morning, we waved goodbye to one of the greatest players to ever set foot on a baseball field.

After what had seemed like Suzuki's final at-bat in the seventh inning, the Mariners put him on deck in the top of the eighth thanks to a one-out Tim Beckham double. He stopped playing last May to become a Mariners special assistant - after totaling 4,367 hits on both sides of the ocean - and struggled in spring training this year.

His professional career ends with 3,089 hits in Major League Baseball, which doesn't include the 1,278 he notched in Japanese pro baseball.

"This is where I wanted to be all along", Trout said in a statement released by the. Former Oakland Athletics outfielder Terrence Long discovered this fact just a few weeks into Ichiro's Major League Baseball career, when Ichiro gunned down Long at third base with a throw so attractive that the video of it, along with the call by legendary broadcaster Dave Niehaus, could have won an Oscar.

There was still the rest of a game to play, but his career was done. "I have enjoyed my time as an Angel and look forward to representing the organization, my teammates and our fans for years to come". During it, they gave him massive ovations for each of his at-bats and his performance in right field.

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Asked about his tears at Ichiro's celebratory exit, Gordon said, "I was just glad you guys did this for him".

As for Wednesday's gamef, Ichiro's Mariners built an early 9-4 lead, thanks in part to a grand slam in the third inning by Domingo Santana, and Seattle defeated Oakland 9-7.

Goldschmidt slugged 30 or more homers in four of the past six seasons with Arizona, but the Diamondbacks dealt the 31-year-old ahead of the last season of his contract, which is slated to pay him $14.5 million.

Yusei Kikuchi, the Japanese rookie pitcher who started the game in his big league debut, openly broke down crying when he embraced Ichiro.

But, of course, if Ichiro could still do that, could still place the ball at his discretion, as his former batting coach, Paul Molitor, was convinced he would do, he wouldn't have been trotting off the emptied field in Tokyo for the final time moments later.

Ichiro went 0 for 1 with a walk in Wednesday's opener. Roenis Elias relieved and got Matt Chapman to hit a comebacker, but first baseman Jay Bruce dropped the throw, allowing a run to score. He rejoined the Mariners previous year, entering semi-retirement after 15 games. Media outlets had been speculating about whether he will be benched on March 28 at the United States opening game.

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