Miami Marlins center fielder Ichiro Suzuki became the 30th member of Major League Baseball's exclusive 3,000-hit club on Sunday after ripping a triple in the seventh inning against the Colorado Rockies in Denver.
Suzuki deposited an offering from Rockies reliever Chris Rusin high off the right field wall. The 42-year-old Ichiro tied Roberto Clemente for 29th place on baseball's all-time hit list.
He beat out an infield single for hit 2,999 on Saturday against the Rockies. That hit came after a stretch that saw Suzuki, mostly used as a pinch hitter these days by the Marlins, go hitless in 11 at-bats over seven games since reaching 2,998 hits on July 28.
That hit came after a stretch that saw Suzuki, mostly used as a pinch hitter these days by the Marlins, go hitless in 11 at-bats over seven games since reaching 2,998 hits on July 28.
The most recent player to join the 3,000 hit club was Alex Rodriguez with a homer on June 19, 2015. Rodriguez announced his intention to retire on Sunday.
Ichiro, 42, also collected 1,278 hits in his native Japan, playing for the Orix Blue Wave of the Nippon Professional Baseball league between 1992 and 2000.
Combining his Japanese and MLB numbers gives him 4,278 hits for his entire baseball career.
There was a mini-controversy after Ichiro collected his 4,257th career hit last month, surpassing Pete Rose's MLB record of 4,256. Some critics, including Rose himself, questioned whether Ichiro's hits in Japan should count toward breaking Rose's record.
Rose told the USA Today at that time, "I'm not trying to take anything away from Ichiro, he's had a Hall of Fame career, but the next thing you know you’ll be counting his high school hits."
Ichiro began his MLB career in 2000 with the Seattle Mariners, and also played for the New York Yankees between 2012 and 2014 before signing with the Marlins in 2015.