Cardinals Mix blog         Write for Cardinals blog    

The Modern Day Wee Willie Keeler

by Mark Ashby Vaughan

I hope that you have been watching the past three games between the Cardinals and the Seattle Mariners. If not, you have missed seeing one of the greatest hitters in MLB history – Ichiro Suzuki – a sure fire first round inductee into the Hall of Fame.

In addition to going 5 for 13 (.385) in the three games against the Cardinals, Ichiro has put up career numbers that no other major leaguer has ever done.

Suzuki has hit for 200-plus hits each of his nine seasons in the league. The nine 200-plus hits seasons has already tied him for the all-time American League record with the great Ty Cobb. He is on pace to do so again this year which would tie him for most ever with Pete Rose at ten.

Only the diminutive HOF’er Wee Willie Keller comes close to Suzuki with eight 200-plus hit seasons in a row.

Ichiro has been an All-Star every year in the league. He has won a Gold Glove award each year as well. He owns a Rookie of the Year and Most Valuable Player (MVP) award too.

A career .333 hitter, it is truly amazing that he has just two American League batting titles (’01 & ’04) to his name.

To gain a perspective on just how good Ichiro is as a hitter, consider this: Tony Gwynn and Rod Carew, who have fifteen batting titles between them, have a total of eight 200-plus hit seasons combined – one less than Ichiro.

Compare Ichiro’s worst season to Skip Schumaker’s best season:

Ichiro – 206 hits; .303 average; 15 HRs; 68 RBIs and 111 runs scored.

Schumaker – 163 hits; .302 average; 8 HRs; 46 RBIs and 87 runs scored.

Suzuki also owns the most hits in a season record with 262 (’04) which surpassed the great George Sisler’s 257 in ’27.

The only other thing that he could do to cement his place in history is do what no other player has done since 1941 – hit for .400 in a season.

Ichiro is the first Japanese born MLB player to already be inducted into the Japanese Baseball HOF. He will be the first to be in both the Japanese and American Hall of Fame soon after he retires.

1 comment:

  1. I went to every game of the series, Ichiro might be the best hitter ever. Watching him play was something that I will always remember and will hopefully tell my grandkids one day, one day when people actually give him the respect he deserves.


Cardinals Mix blog featured writers LS Murphy,Brian F. Logush
Write about the Cardinals
We believe that you the avid fan, student journalist, and or freelance writer deserve to be heard. Avid fans have a strong desire to hear from the common (or not so common) "man" as well. You are always free to write about the material of your choice, in your own unique style, and on your own schedule. So vent,enlighten and share with us!
Contact us at:
Enjoy Cardinals rumors, news, talk?
Please help us spread the word on the Sports Mixed Network by letting friends, and family know about it. The more we grow our community of avid fans, the more features we can add. So please send a Tweet, Facebook message or better yet tell them in person.