He did it! Ichiro Suzuki slapped a single in the first inning of tonight’s game to earn hit number 4,000 between Japan and MLB. Congratulations Ichiro, we are proud of you, and happy that you did it as a member of the New York Yankees!
Number 4,000 came off of R.A. Dickey of the Toronto Blue Jays at Yankee Stadium. The total comes from his 1,278 hits in Japan and 2,722 in Major League Baseball. As always, Ichiro is modest about his milestone.
“After I got my first hit, if at that point I said to you guys, ‘My goal is to have 4,000 hits,’ I think everybody would have called me an idiot,” he said. “Now, after years and years of just getting hits every day, I’ve come to this point. What is important is just going out there and doing what you can do every single day.”
That is what makes Ichiro so special. His humility and hard work are what have gotten him here. He represents the average person who becomes special by going to work every day just wanting to do his job.
Sure, his hard work is for his manager, his teammates and his fans. But most of all, as a professional, he strives to go home at the end of the day knowing in his heart that he did the best that he could.
But don’t think his teammates haven’t noticed, as well.
“That’s a lot of hits, man. It’s pretty impressive,” Derek Jeter has said. “I don’t care if it’s 4,000 in Little League. It shows how consistent he’s been throughout his career. It makes you look at how many hits he’s got here in a short amount of time. That’s difficult to do…”
Remarkably, he has also passed Yankee great Lou Gehrig on the MLB hit list. Now, a bunch more will help catapult the Yankees into the post-season. Thanks for your dedication, Ichiro, and thanks for being a Yankee.