Gordon gives Ichiro fitting tribute in Mariners' win vs A's

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And after 27 seasons at the professional level, it appears as though Ichiro is calling it quits.

"With Ichiro's track record of success, his personality, his unique perspective and his work ethic, he is singularly positioned to impact both our younger players and the veterans in the clubhouse", says Dipoto.

Ichiro will still be with the Mariners' big-league team, possibly even in uniform before games. This was 2005, the year after Suzuki totaled a single-season best 262 hits.

The team has put him in an advisory role and he will therefore not play for the rest of the season. He will assist, based on his experience, with outfield play, baserunning and hitting.

It wouldn't be surprising to somehow see Ichiro return to the Mariners in 2019 and play in Japan for the two exhibition games and two regular season games in Tokyo vs. the A's, considering how the team has handled Ichiro this season.

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.

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With everyone healthy, Ichiro is only Seattle's fifth outfielder. He also turned back the clock by robbing Jose Ramirez of a home run when he leaped up against the left-field wall and made a terrific catch. Mitch Haniger has claimed right field for his own with an excellent performance in April.

His agent, John Boggs, told USA Today Sports that Suzuki is definitely not retiring. Boggs made it clear that this is not a retirement.

I'm right-handed. Growing up in the Ichiro era, I wanted so badly to mimic the Ichiro batting stance and preparation that I taught myself to become a switch-hitter. Obviously, he will not be playing in 2018.

"He in no way has made a decision to retire", Boggs said, according to the report. "Seattle is where he wants to be and where he's most comfortable. This was the most creative way to keep him within the organization and still give him an opportunity to play if that's what happens in 2019".

The final at-bat for Ichiro in the big leagues will be a swinging strikeout in the bottom of the ninth inning of a 3-2 loss to the Oakland Athletics on May 2. He is one of seven players to collect at least 3,000 hits and 500 stolen bases in the Major Leagues, joining Lou Brock, Ty Cobb, Eddie Collins, Rickey Henderson, Paul Molitor and Honus Wagner. With Ichiro, anything is possible. If his playing days are over, it's been one helluva ride.

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