Ichiro Suzuki Is Stepping Away from the Field

Getty Images

Getty Images

"That is our No. 1 priority and Ichiro's No. 1 priority".

The Mariners announced that Suzuki was becoming a special assistant to the chairman, effective immediately.

"He's taking on a different role for 2018, and 2019 has yet to evolve", Boggs told The Athletic.

"Now I don't feel as bad about walking Ichiro last night", tweeted Oakland A's lefty Brett Anderson, who started Wednesday's game and walked Suzuki in the third inning.

If this is indeed the end of his Major League Baseball playing days, he finishes his career with a.311 batting average, totaling 117 home runs, 780 RBI, 1,420 runs scored, 509 stolen bases and 3,089 hits.

He not only became the first player to attain his 3,000 hit in a Marlins uniform, his pursuit of the milestone in 2016 was one of the compelling and uplifting stories around the team during a long drought of losing seasons.

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Ichiro Suzuki is moving to a new role with the Seattle Mariners - one that will take him off the field. At 44, Suzuki is not the hitter nor speedster he once was, with just nine hits in 44 at-bats and zero stolen bases this season. He also won the 2001 American League Rookie of the Year and Most Valuable Player awards, two batting titles, 10 Gold Gloves and three Silver Slugger awards. Though he was an AL All-Star and Gold Glove Award victor 10 times, Suzuki's legacy is bigger than the game. Note that the Mariners have officially released Suzuki form their 25-man and 40-man rosters to bring pitcher Erik Goeddel in. He will be able to offer advice on hitting, base running, and outfield play.

Dipoto added: "We really don't want him to change anything that he's doing right now, with the exception that he will not be playing in games".

During his career with Orix, Ichiro, a native of Kasugai, Aichi prefecture, Japan, led the Pacific League in batting average for a Japanese-record seven consecutive seasons. Cruz followed with a shot over the right-center field wall for his seventh home run of the year and a 4-0 lead. If sources are to be believed, then the 44-year old will not play for the rest of the season, and possibly the rest of his career.

In a way, his struggles this season (.205 on the year) shined a light on the reason as to why the M's signed the aging legend.

Most importantly, it means the Mariners' all-time hits leader has probably finished his playing career.

Still, the Mariners did not want to lose his baseball knowledge acquired over 17 full MLB seasons and 10 All-Star Game appearances.

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