Japanese MLB star and Japanese Baseball Hall-of-Famer Ichiro Suzuki officially retired after playing his final game with the Seattle Mariners in Tokyo on Thursday.
Before the game against the Oakland Athletics at the Tokyo Dome, the 45-year-old athlete told his Mariners teammates that he would retire that day.
After taking the field in the eighth inning, all of his teammates left for the dugout except for Suzuki, according to ESPN
The final at-bat of his career did not end as planned. Suzuki landed a soft grounder and ran to the right field for the bottom half of the inning, Sporting News
In what could be his final at-bat, Ichiro with a close out at first. #Mariners pic.twitter.com/lZ9zNQRwmw
— Neel Dhere (@Neel_Dhere) March 21, 2019
Before another pitch was thrown, Mariners manager Scott Servais stopped the game and pulled Suzuki out to give the crowd a chance to honor him.
Suzuki received a rousing standing ovation from fans as he walked out of the field and gave each of his teammates a hug before exiting.
Fans and players became overwhelmed with emotions as they watched Suzuki’s retirement unfold.
Same, Dee. Same. #MLB開幕戦 pic.twitter.com/6NqCflsMtf
— Cut4 (@Cut4) 21 March 2019
The professional baseball player won the AL MVP and was named Rookie of the Year as a Mariner in 2001.
He also played 14 out of his more than 18 Major League Baseball seasons in Seattle.
Suzuki held 3,098 hits in the league and was ranked 23rd all-time and 1,278 hits in Japan, which brings him to a total of 4,367 hits.
Images Screenshot via YouTube / MLB