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Can Ichiro get 3,000?


Moose Milligan

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http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/s/suzukic01.shtml

He turns 36 in October and just reached 2,000. He's got 195 hits this year. Barring a freak accident, he'll easily surpass 200 hits again. He's recorded over 200 hits every year he's played and averages 231 per season.

He's showing no sign of slowing down as he's hitting .358 this year. Mauer is still leading the league but there's not that big of a gap between the two.

But he's got to slow down sometime. I think the question here is what kind of decline will he have? Will he hit a wall or age gracefully?

Is he interested in playing 4.5-5 more years?

I have to say, I think he can do it. Even if he hits his early 40's and drops off to 180-190 hits per season, he's still hit a ton early on to where he can get there. He keeps himself in impeccable shape

He's been a marvel to watch, it's a shame he's playing in Seattle where he doesn't get the air time that a lot of others do. Had he been playing in a major media market, it'd be interesting to see the hype machine that would be built around him. Simply incredible....I wouldn't know where to look as to who's got the streak for 200 hit seasons, but I just looked at Boggs and Gwynn and they're not even close to what Ichiro has done.

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I think he does. Ichro to me looks like the player that will play well into his 40s.

I don't think anyone has the streak of 200 hits like Ichro. Ichrio is a one of a kind player in the history of baseball.

He is, and the best thing is that the steroid argument doesn't really apply to him. His game isn't built on power. It's about insane hand eye coordination and bat control.

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He is, and the best thing is that the steroid argument doesn't really apply to him. His game isn't built on power. It's about insane hand eye coordination and bat control.

and infield singles.

It is pretty remarkable how this guy has so little walks and extra base hits and yet he is able to post a .350+ BA.

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I hope he gets 3,000... even he continues to pretend to not speak English ;-)

He pretty much singlehandedly changed how his countrymen are viewed over here as ballplayers. While you can cite a couple P's, before Ichiro the idea of a Japanese ballplayer was just not taken seriously. He put an end to that all by himself.

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He's currently tied with Willie Keeler for the record with eight consecutive 200-hit seasons. They're actually very similar players, small guys who hit for little power, didn't walk much, and hit for ridiculous averages. If Ichiro played in the 1890s or 1920s I have no doubt that he'd have hit .400 many times. Hitting .370 today is at least as difficult and impressive as hitting .420 back then.

As far as 3000 is concerned, sure he could do it. But from my perspective, he's already there because the Japanese Leagues are as good as or better than a lot of leagues we consider "major" like the Federal League, the National Association, the American Association of the 1880s, some early years of the AL/NL, probably some of the wartime leagues, and (especially) the Union Association.

My big question is whether he can pass Rose on the all time list for professional hits (I'm pretty sure he holds that record with 4683).

I hope he's not hanging on for 3-4 years hitting .280/.320/.320 just to pile up couting stats (much like Rose did), with folks talking about how all the little things he does makes up for a .640 OPS. He's a legitimately great player if he has an .800, but if he loses a step and doesn't hit .300 he's not too much different than the O's version of Jay Payton.

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He's currently tied with Willie Keeler for the record with eight consecutive 200-hit seasons. They're actually very similar players, small guys who hit for little power, didn't walk much, and hit for ridiculous averages. If Ichiro played in the 1890s or 1920s I have no doubt that he'd have hit .400 many times. Hitting .370 today is at least as difficult and impressive as hitting .420 back then.

As far as 3000 is concerned, sure he could do it. But from my perspective, he's already there because the Japanese Leagues are as good as or better than a lot of leagues we consider "major" like the Federal League, the National Association, the American Association of the 1880s, some early years of the AL/NL, probably some of the wartime leagues, and (especially) the Union Association.

My big question is whether he can pass Rose on the all time list for professional hits (I'm pretty sure he holds that record with 4683).

I hope he's not hanging on for 3-4 years hitting .280/.320/.320 just to pile up couting stats (much like Rose did), with folks talking about how all the little things he does makes up for a .640 OPS. He's a legitimately great player if he has an .800, but if he loses a step and doesn't hit .300 he's not too much different than the O's version of Jay Payton.

I was manipulating fantasy lineups tonight (Ichiro is on fire, as usual...) and thinking about this thread (possibility of 3000 in MLB) and thinking he MUST have 1000+ in the Japanese League... He must have a shot at 4000 and Pete Rose. He's like this generation's Sadaharu Oh.

4000+ career hits, no matter where they were gotten... would be pretty amazing. He didn't bet on any games........ so I'm guessing he's a shoe-in for the HOF. Even with 3500+ total.

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I was manipulating fantasy lineups tonight (Ichiro is on fire, as usual...) and thinking about this thread (possibility of 3000 in MLB) and thinking he MUST have 1000+ in the Japanese League... He must have a shot at 4000 and Pete Rose. He's like this generation's Sadaharu Oh.

4000+ career hits, no matter where they were gotten... would be pretty amazing. He didn't bet on any games........ so I'm guessing he's a shoe-in for the HOF. Even with 3500+ total.

He has 1434 Japanese League hits, for 3435 total. He needs 1248 to tie Rose. That's the equivalent of six seasons of 208, or eight of 156.

I tried to run his numbers in ESPN's version of Bill James' Favorite Toy, but it's not working for me.

My BROCK2 spreadsheet swags that he'll be able to play into his 40s, and will collect at least another 950 hits. So that suggests it's plausible.

I'd guess he has a 10-20% chance of catching Rose.

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He has 1434 Japanese League hits, for 3435 total. He needs 1248 to tie Rose. That's the equivalent of six seasons of 208, or eight of 156.

Comparisons with Keeler or other pre-modern players might be valid, but Rose collected his hits in the real major leagues.

Sure, it's possible that Ichiro could reach 3,000 but it's also rather unlikely. That's 5 more seasons averaging around 200 hits -- very difficult for hitters approaching age 40.

I'd guess he has a 10-20% chance of catching Rose.

I'd guess less than 10 percent, but your odds are plausible.

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Comparisons with Keeler or other pre-modern players might be valid, but Rose collected his hits in the real major leagues.

Sure, Rose doesn't have much of a problem with league quality aside from the general slope of history. But the point was MLB has an accepted list of "Major" leagues. The Japanese Leagues are as good or better than quite a few of those. They're probably better than most of the leagues that, for example, Ty Cobb or Walter Johnson played in.

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... The Japanese Leagues are as good or better than quite a few of those. They're probably better than most of the leagues that, for example, Ty Cobb or Walter Johnson played in.

I don't buy that, but it's impossible to prove or even build a convincing analysis, given how much the game has changed since then. Rose and Ichiro never had to deal with grimy baseballs that had spit dripping off them. Cobb and Keeler never had to scrounge for hits with fielders using basket-size gloves playing on a manicured or astroturf playing surface.

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I don't buy that, but it's impossible to prove or even build a convincing analysis, given how much the game has changed since then. Rose and Ichiro never had to deal with grimy baseballs that had spit dripping off them. Cobb and Keeler never had to scrounge for hits with fielders using basket-size gloves playing on a manicured or astroturf playing surface.

Impossible? No, not at all. I know that Clay Davenport, Bill James, and Pete Palmer (among others) have all done very convincing analysis and research into the topic and independently come up with similar conclusions. What's so impossible about comparing results of players who played in consecutive years, going year-to-year throughout history? Or doing an analysis of the spread between the best and worst players in the majors over time? Or even a more qualitative analysis of player population pools, scouting and development maturity, farm system standardization, and the like?

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ESPN.com says Ichiro is on pace for 229 hits this season. If he does that, by my calculations the favorite toy gives him a 5.6% chance of getting to 4,683.

That's using 24 - 60% x age to estimate his remaining years, which comes out at 3. It seems to me like he's likely to play longer than that.

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