Ichiro walks off to loud cheers, Mariners beat A's in 12

Ichiro went into the game hitting ninth - not exactly a vote of confidence - despite having 3,089 hits since joining Seattle in 2001. However, Ichiro did; In 2009, Ichiro visited the grave of Sisler while in St. Louis for the 2009 All-Star Game as a return gesture to the Sisler family who traveled to see him break the record in 2004. The crowd erupted for the loudest ovation of the night as he lifted his cap and acknowledged the crowd before stepping into the dugout and sharing a moment with Mariners Hall of Famer Ken Griffey Jr.

One of the most awesome stats that bookends Ichiro's career.

One of baseball's major league baseball's most illustrious players said goodbye to the diamond yesterday. Rob Dibble, then a prominent commentator on ESPN's Baseball Tonight, said he'd run naked through Times Square if Ichiro won the batting title-believing that the talent gap between Japanese and MLB pitching was so dramatic that Ichiro wouldn't succeed.

Last May, Ichiro assumed the post of special assistant to the Mariners' chairman.

The outfielder said in a statement after the game that he had "achieved so many of my dreams in baseball, both in my career in Japan and, since 2001, in Major League Baseball".

"I didn't think I would be in this place and be able to finish the way this happened", he said via a translator.

As of this morning, it appears that Ichiro has played his final major league game. Over the course of his career he amassed 59.3 Wins Above Replacement (a statistic that aggregates value in comparison with a notional "replacement level" player available in the minor leagues) and 3,089 hits. "I have enjoyed my time as an Angel and look forward to representing the organization, my teammates and our fans for years to come". 10 straight seasons of 200 hits, an Major League Baseball record 262 hits in a season, multiple All-Star games and Gold Gloves.

"For me, it doesn't get better than tonight", he said. While that ended up not being the case, he gave Mariners fans quite the thrill in his last at-bat of the series, drilling a home run to send the crowd into a frenzy. Suzuki played nine years in Japan before coming to the United States and over 28 seasons, Suzuki has become one of the most accomplished baseball players ever.

Beckham got three hits and three times. If they did, Ichiro would be hitting.065.

Ichiro went 0 for 1 with a walk in Wednesday's opener. Media outlets had been speculating about whether he will be benched on March 28 at the USA opening game. By February, he was back in Mariners camp for spring training.

  • Steve Townsend