6/15/16

DOES ICHIRO'S HIT TOTALS COMPARE TO PETE ROSE? by Tom Brennan

14 comments
DOES ICHIRO'S HIT TOTALS COMPARE TO PETE ROSE? by Tom Brennan

Just a very quick thought on the subject, and I am sure others have had the same thought:

YES, HIS HIT TOTALS DO COMPARE. WHY DO I SAY SO?

Ichiro played briefly as an 18 and 19 year old in Japan, 2 cups of sake, if you will.

In his first full year at age 20, he hit .385.  THREE EIGHTY FIVE.  Every case could be made that if he were in the US, he plays that year and wins rookie of the year.

In his 7 full years in Japan, he played 125 games per year, 135 being the most.  In his 15 full years in the majors, he has averaged 157 games per year. 

So let's assume that if he had played in the US in those early 7 years, he'd have not hit as well - he has, after all, averaged .314 in the bigs, .353 in Japan.  But two things:

First, in the US, he probably pays 25-30 more games per year, and that would have offset the lower average he'd probably have had in the majors.

Second, he hit a much higher .331 in the majors for his first 10 years, running through age 36.  It is quite likely he'd have hit about .330 in his earlier years had they been played in the US rather than Japan.

It is entirely possible that Ichiro would have MORE hits if his entire career was in the US than he does now.

Pete's record stands, but Ichiro's certainly warrants a huge asterisk.


14 comments:

Thomas Brennan said...

As Ichiro sits at 4,255, keep in mind the Mets' paltry team career hit records: Wright 1,777, Kraepool 1,418, Jose Reyes 1,300. So NO MET EVER HAS 2000 CAREER HITS WHILE WITH THE METS.

And those 3 combined have had 4,495 hits as Mets, only a few hudred more than Ichiro. So impressive for Ichiro, so typical of the historically hitting-challenged Mets.

Second spitter said...

I disagree. His hit totals over there matter as much as saduharo ohs home run records. Or Tuffy Rhodes 55 home runs. Yes they are impressive, but it's a different league, different competition level. He should be judged soley on what he did in this league. He can be judged for his hit totals in that league while in japan.

John H said...

One of the biggest reasons the mets never had anyone over 2000 hits is because they never keep anyone! Everyone hits free agency and bolts. Is it any wonder that Ed kranepool was once our hit leader? He's the only one who stuck around!

Thomas Brennan said...

True, John H. But any player that started with the Mets, I wondered off hand if any had over 2000 hits. Otis got to 2020. Singleton got to 2029, both combined had less than Ichiro. Am I missing anyone?

Second Spitter, it is one of those questions no one will ever be able to answer definitively. Rose has the real record, but I believe Ichiro's deserves an asterisk. I think, honestly, that had they been contemporaries, Ichiro would have been perceived as better. Bushels of Gold Gloves and over 700 steals. And I bet he'd have had as many or more hits. But on the later, we'll never know.

John H said...

It's funny bc the guy I think of is Jeff Kent. Nearly 2500 hits. I would put him there because the mets got him in his rookie year. But really, no. We never have drafted great hitters. Truthfully, if he can get his act together the answer to your question will be
Jose Reyes.

Thomas Brennan said...

John H, weigh in on your thoughts on Jose in Reese's article, just posted to Macks Mets, if you haven't already :)

eraff said...

NO..... but the fact that his MLB Hit Totals came AFTER his Japanese experience gives great validity to Ichiro's amazing Hit Making Ability.

If he had 3000 MLB hits followed by 1000 in Japan, it would be LESS impressive. He had about 2300 MLB Hits in his aged 27-36 Seasons..... I believe that points us to the reality that he'd have had at least 500-1000 SOMEWHERE in the five seasons between 22-26 years of age.

There is no argument to his greatness as a hitter, fielder, Baserunner. Rose, Carew and Ichiro have been unique players. They influenced the game with more than just "Singles"--- Carew and Ichiro were brilliant Baserunners and Great all-around players. Rose was perpetually THE MOST INFLUENTIAL PLAYER ON THE FIELD by Sheer WILL.

As "Singles Hitters Go", these guys Trancended Boggs---a great player who lacked the impact of these three.



eraff said...

Greg Jeffries---about 1600.... Reyes 1900......

Thomas Brennan said...

Good perspective, eraff. I still think that Ichiro hitting. 385 as a 20 year old compared in ability to excel at that age to A Rod. It is likely he would have been another rare MLB 20 year old star. I bet in those 7 full Japan years, if played in US over 162 game seasons, would have been a mimimum 1200 hits.

Thomas Brennan said...

Good perspective, eraff. I still think that Ichiro hitting. 385 as a 20 year old compared in ability to excel at that age to A Rod. It is likely he would have been another rare MLB 20 year old star. I bet in those 7 full Japan years, if played in US over 162 game seasons, would have been a mimimum 1200 hits.

Reese Kaplan said...

Singles hitters never get the due they deserve. Tony Gwynn scared me way more than many sluggers who you could easily strike out.

eraff said...

I forgot about Tony Gwynn..Tremendous all around ballplayer!!!

Thomas Brennan said...

Gwynn was something else. Too bad he wasn't a Met.

Richard Jones said...

You can make a similar argument for Oh hitting 500 homers in MLB and Gibson hitting 800 home runs in MLB.

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